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  • Allyson Fiddler 'Performing Austria'

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Performing Austria: protesting the musical nation

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published
<mark>Journal publication date</mark>20/02/2014
<mark>Journal</mark>IASPM@Journal
Issue number1
Volume4
Number of pages16
Pages (from-to)5-20
<mark>State</mark>Published
<mark>Original language</mark>English

Abstract

The Austrian national elections of 1999 and the subsequent coalition government formation in 2000 sparked a wave of protests, both at home and abroad. This article examines a body of protest music (ranging from heavy metal, rock and punk to mock-choral and microtonal) that came about as a direct response to the turn in Austrian politics towards the extreme-right. In interrogating this protest music we see an important facet of identity-(de)construction in the state’s artistic self-expression and suggest a highly politicised counter-image to the usual, musically-inspired representations of Austria, the land more readily associated abroad with Mozart and Haydn, the Vienna boys’ choir, waltzing and yodelling. The music here is interrogated for the textual and musical strategies it deploys, and the spaces and icons of protest performance are probed for their efficacy and for the political interventions that they engender.

Bibliographic note

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License.

Allyson Fiddler is a Professor of German and Austrian Studies at Lancaster University (U.K.). She has published extensively on the Nobel laureate Elfriede Jelinek as well as on numerous other Austrian writers and filmmakers. Publications include articles on protest film and on mockumentaries. Allyson has recently edited a volume of Austrian Studies on ‘The Austrian Noughties’ and sits on the board of the Elfriede Jelinek Research Centre (University of Vienna).