Abstract/Details

Minstrelsy in post -Civil War New York, 1865–1870


2005 2005

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Abstract (summary)

Blackface minstrelsy transformed the colonial, European-based theater culture, which had existed in America since the 1780s, into a true American popular genre. Minstrels integrated elements from European, African American, and Anglo-American musical and dramatic sources into a highly improvisational format in order to produce the minstrel show.1

Bryant's Minstrels, Christy's Minstrels, and the San Francisco Minstrels—New York's most popular minstrel troupes—flourished by performing blackface and war time skits and songs, challenge dances, farces, burlesques of serious opera and theater, and by including acts such as instrumental virtuosi and brass bands. These minstrel troupes continued their success by adapting to the changing tastes of reconstruction era audiences.

My current research involves developing a chronology outlining minstrel activity in New York for the years 1865–1870. Advertisements and reviews of minstrel shows in New York newspapers serve as the primary source material. I will present data describing this activity during the period of study in the political and social context of the time. Topics will include population shift and changing values, the demand for variety and cheap entertainment, new sources for show material, opportunities for new black and female performers, and programs performed.

1William J. Mahar, Behind the Burnt Cork Mask: Early Blackface Minstrelsy and Antebellum American Popular Culture (Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 1999), 1–2.

Indexing (details)


Subject
Music;
American history;
American studies
Classification
0413: Music
0337: American history
0323: American studies
Identifier / keyword
Communication and the arts; Social sciences; Blackface; Minstrelsy; New York City; Post-Civil War
Title
Minstrelsy in post -Civil War New York, 1865–1870
Author
Van Nostrand, Jill
Number of pages
385
Publication year
2005
Degree date
2005
School code
0046
Source
DAI-A 66/08, Dissertation Abstracts International
Place of publication
Ann Arbor
Country of publication
United States
ISBN
9780542289286, 0542289288
Advisor
Graziano, John M.
University/institution
City University of New York
University location
United States -- New York
Degree
D.M.A.
Source type
Dissertations & Theses
Language
English
Document type
Dissertation/Thesis
Dissertation/thesis number
3187433
ProQuest document ID
305005432
Copyright
Database copyright ProQuest LLC; ProQuest does not claim copyright in the individual underlying works.
Document URL
http://search.proquest.com/docview/305005432
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