From Balcone to Biglietto – the story of Architecture and Music in St. Petersburg

An illustrated talk by Rosamund Bartlett

20th January 2022 at 19:30 GMT

This talk explores the important impact of Italian arts in 18th and 19th century Tsarist Russia. It discusses the baroque and neo-classical palaces, churches and public buildings designed by architects such as Rastrelli and Rinaldi, explores the musical repertoire commissioned by the imperial court from Italian composers, ranging from Araja’s La forze d’amore e dell’odio to Verdi’s La forza del destino, and considers the many Italian virtuosi who performed on the imperial stage, including Viotti, Grisi and Tamagno.

Rosamund Bartlett is a writer, scholar and linguist who combines expertise in Russian cultural history with a particular interest in European modernism and opera. Her university appointments have included a fellowship at the European University Institute in Florence, during which time she played in the cello section of the Orchestra Desiderio da Settignano. She has lectured at public institutions around the world, from the V&A to the Art Gallery of New South Wales in Sydney and the Academia Santa Cecilia in Rome, and has read nearly all of Camileri’s Montalbano mysteries in Italian.

This event is free of charge for Members of the Aberdeen Italian Circle or Società Dante Alighieri. For guests we request a donation of £5 per screen, or whatever you can afford, to help us offset our costs. You can donate here:

If you would prefer to send a cheque, the address is here.

The Zoom link will be posted here couple of days before the event.

If you have not used Zoom before you will find that it is very easy to use. When you click on the link to join, your computer may have to download a small file to enable it to connect, but you do not need a Zoom account. We suggest that if you are a first time user that you allow an extra few minutes to join the meeting to allow for your computer to install the Zoom file. Full help with Zoom can be found here:

We request that during the talk you keep your microphone on mute to avoid intrusive background noise.

We look forward to seeing you on 20th January.