Thousandth entry in Musicals Encyclopedia at University of Freiburg

After three years, the thousandth entry has already been made: The online musical lexicon gathers information on all premieres and first performances of popular musical theatre in the German-speaking world since 1945. On 30 November 2022, the thousandth entry was made with a text on the musical “The Hunchback of Notre Dame” in a current production of the Ronacher Theatre in Vienna. It is edited by Berlin theater scholar Dr. Wolfgang Jansen and Klaus Baberg, Board member of the Friends and Patrons of the German Musical Archive, in conjunction with the Center for Popular Culture and Music (ZPKM) at the University of Freiburg. “It is wonderful that the encyclopedia is growing so dynamically. The enormous diversity of works in popular music theater is becoming increasingly apparent,” says Prof. Dr. Dr. Michael Fischer, Executive Director of the ZPKM.

The German Musical Archive is expanding as well

The musicals encyclopedia is a work-in-progress. The two initiators are constantly adding new entries. These are largely based on documents held in the German Musical Archive at the Freiburg Center for Popular Culture and Music. “The connection with the ZPKM is ideal,” Jansen reports. “We are not only able to use the extensive material there, but we can also pass on newly acquired material that we use for the encyclopedia directly to the archive.” In this way, its holdings are also continuously expanding. The German Musical Archive at the ZPKM in Freiburg was founded back in 2010 on Jansen’s initiative.

Volunteering

The musicals encyclopedia was created in the summer of 2019. The work of the two initiators is voluntar, so the project is also a good example of Citizen Science, i.e. science with the help of citizens, says Fischer: “The University of Freiburg considers itself fortunate that such a project can be realized through the commitment of Klaus Baberg and Dr. Wolfgang Jansen.” He adds that this encyclopedia, in conjunction with the German Musical Archive, will lay the foundation for upcoming music and theater research. “We had nothing closely compared to this before.”

The online musicals encyclopedia can be found at www.musicallexikon.eu

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