ARS 2010: “Virtuosity

Princeton University
March 11-12, 2010

McCormick Hall 106

Although most associated with music, “Virtuosity” can refer to technical excellence in any art.  Inspired in part by scholars such as Fred Moten, Carlo Rotella, Ingrid Monson, and Scott Saul whose work situates virtuosic musicianship within its American and international social and political contexts, the theme is intended to spark discussions that uncover the cultural connotations of virtuosity of all kinds.

vir·tu·os·i·ty [In sense 1 ad. med.L. virtusitas, f. late L. virtusus VIRTUOUS a. In other senses f. VIRTUOS-O + -ITY: cf. F. virtuosité.]

1.    a. Manly qualities or character. Obs.1

b. Virtuousness. Obs. (Bailey, 1721).

2. The pursuits, interests, or temperament, characteristic of a virtuoso; interest or taste in the fine arts, esp. of a fastidious, finical, dilettante or trifling nature.

b. spec. Excessive attention to technique, or to the production of special effects, in vocal or instrumental music (also transf. in art or literature).

c. With a and pl. A special study or interest of the kind affected by virtuosi.

3. Virtuosi collectively.