Edinburgh’s last International Exhibition and its Music

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter (peer-reviewed)peer-review

Abstract / Description of output

In 1851, London hosted The Great Exhibition of the Works of Industry of All Nations for which the famous Crystal Palace was constructed in Hyde Park. This became the most famous of a long series of such events arguably begun by the French in 1798 when the authorities attempted to bring people together to celebrate achievements in different fields or by particular nations. Following the success of the Great Exhibition, many cities around the world, from Nijni Novgorod, Calcutta and Saigon to Philadelphia, Melbourne and Cape Town staged their own versions. These were necessarily different in scale depending on the size of the host town or city and also had a different focus to highlight local, regional, national or temporal specialities. English cities outside London that hosted exhibitions include Manchester, Newcastle-on-Tyne, and Bradford. In Scotland, there was one Exhibition in Glasgow in 1880, focussed on naval and marine engineering, while Edinburgh held seven between 1856 and 1890 with various subjects to the fore. Here the discussion centres on the 1890 exhibition, the last in Edinburgh, for which the named focus was electrical engineering. This was organised to mark the opening of the Forth Railway Bridge in 1889. Alongside the central displays, there was a busy programme of musical and sporting events. This chapter examines the music, which was structured around organ recitals, brass band concerts and choral society performances, considering the repertoire and performers within the wider context of cultural and scientific life in Scotland’s capital at the end of the nineteenth century.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationMusic and the Second Industrial Revolution
EditorsMassimiliano Sala
PublisherBrepols Publishers
ISBN (Print)978-2-503-58571-0
Publication statusPublished - 31 Oct 2019

Publication series

NameMusic, Science and Technology (MSCTE)
PublisherBrepols Publishers


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