Skip to content
Skip to navigation menu

Dr Clair Rowden


Clair Rowden Position: Senior Lecturer Email:
Telephone: +44(0)29 208 70462
Fax: +44(0)29 208 74379
Extension: 70462
Location: 37 Corbett Road (Annexe), Room 1.15

Dr Rowden is a graduate of Goldsmith's College, University of London, and City University where she completed her PhD in 2002. She has previously lectured at City University, Rouen University and Royal Holloway, University of London.

Dr Rowden's research deals mainly with nineteenth-century opera and France, and her research activities range from music editing and archival study to microhistory and reception studies, and include operatic staging and dance, iconography and gender.

Clair is a member of the AHRC/IMR network ' Francophone Music Criticism 1789-1914' and is responsible for the preparation of on-line editions of various corpora of nineteenth-century French music criticism posted as part of the FMC's creation of a valuable web resource for researchers:

Clair is a founding member of CIRO (Cardiff Interdisciplinary Research in Opera) and works closely with Welsh National Opera to organise collaborative research and teaching events.  

In 2011, Dr Rowden was visiting fellow in music at both Université Jean Monnet, Saint-Etienne France and the Federal University of Bahia, Salvador, Brazil.




Forthcoming Opera and Caricature in the French fin-de-siècle Press.

Forthcoming Transforming Opera, ed. Clair Rowden & Alexandra Wilson.

Performing Salome, Revealing Stories, ed. Clair Rowden. (Aldershot: Ashgate, Ashgate Interdisciplinary Studies in Opera, 2013), including chapter ‘Whose/Who’s Salome? Natalia Trouhanowa, a dancing diva’ (71-97)

Republican Morality and Catholic Tradition at the Opera: Massenet's Hérodiade and Thaïs (Weinsberg: Musik-Edition Lucie Galland, 2004)

Jules Massenet - Thaïs - Dossier de presse parisienne (Heilbronn: Musik-Edition Lucie Galland, 2000)

Book Chapters, Journal Articles and Published Papers

Forthcoming ‘Thaïs: Adaptation, Degeneration and Genre’, Dixneuf, electronic journal, special issue edited by Kate Griffiths (Cardiff University).

Forthcoming 2013 ‘L’immortalité de Massenet à travers la caricature’, in Jean-Christophe Branger &
Vincent Giroud (eds.), (Saint-Etienne: Publications de l’Université de Saint-Etienne).

Forthcoming 2013 ‘“Cariculture” in 1890s Paris’, in Antonio Baldassare, Debra Pring and Pablo Sotuyo Blanco (eds.), Enhancing music iconography research: considering the current, setting new trends (Vienna: Hollitzer Wissenschaftsverlag).

‘Memorialisation, Commemoration and Commodification: Massenet and Caricature’, Cambridge Opera Journal, 25/2, July 2013, 139-63.

‘Choral Music and Music-Making in France’ (205-12), and ‘Félicien David, Charles Gounod, and Jules Massenet’ (266-73), in Donna M. Di Grazia (ed.), Nineteenth-Century Choral Music, Routledge series in Musical Genres, R. Larry Todd, series general editor (New York & London: Routledge), 2012.

Salome and modern opera: a Parisian perspective’, in Günter Brosche & Jürgen May (eds.), Richard Strauss-Jahrbuch 2011, herausgegeben von der Internationalen Richard Strauss-Gesellschaft in Wien und dem Richard Strauss-Institut in Garmisch-Partenkirchen (Tutzing: Hans Schneider, 2011), 163-176.

‘Loïe Fuller et Salomé : les drames mimés de Gabriel Pierné et de Florent Schmitt’, in Jean-Christophe Branger (ed.), Musique et chorégraphie en France de Léo Delibes à Florent Schmitt (Saint-Etienne: Publications de l’Université de Saint-Etienne), 215-259. (2010)

‘Opera, Caricature and the Unconscious: Massenet’s Thaïs, a case study’, Music in Art, XXXIV/1-2, Spring-Fall, 274-289. (2009)

'Decentralisation and Regeneration at the Theatre des Arts, Rouen, 1889-1891', Revue de Musicologie, 2008/1 (94) (May 2008), 139-80

'Werther, La Navarraise and Verismo: A Matter of Taste', Franco-British Studies, 37 (2006-07), 3-34.

'L'amour sacré et le sacre de l'amour: l'homme saint chez Massenet', in Jean-Christophe Branger & Alban Ramaut (eds), Opéra et religion sous la IIIe République (Saint-Etienne: Publications de l'Université de Saint-Etienne, 2006), 257-84.

'Paris - Londres: La Navarraise face à la presse', in Jean-Christophe Branger & Alban Ramaut (eds), Le Naturalisme sur la scène lyrique (Saint-Etienne: Publications de l'Université de Saint-Etienne, 2004), 106-28.

'Hérodiade: Church, State and the Feminist Movement', in Jim Samson & Bennett Zon (eds.), Nineteenth-Century Music: Selected Proceedings of the Tenth International Conference (London: Ashgate, 2002), 250-78.


Responsible for on-line edition of ‘Salome’ for AHRC web-resource Francophone Music Criticism 1789-1914. (2013 onwards)

Georges Bizet, Carmen, (London: Edition Peters), credited Editorial Assistant to Richard Langham Smith. (Material available for hire since 2000) (2013).

Responsible for on-line edition of ‘Complete criticism of Joseph d’Ortigues, phase 4’ for AHRC web-resource Francophone Music Criticism 1789-1914. (2010)

Responsible for on-line editions of ‘Massenet, La Navarraise, Paris premiere. Dossier de presse’ and ‘Mascagni, Cavalleria rusticana, Paris premiere. Dossier de presse’ for AHRC web-resource Francophone Music Criticism 1789-1914. (2008)

Programme Notes

‘La Réception des Pêcheurs de Perles’, Opéra Comique (Paris) programme Les Pêcheurs de Perles, June 2012, 71-6.

‘The End of the Fairytale’, The Royal Opera House Covent Garden programme Cendrillon, June, 12-19.

Les Pêcheurs and the Parisian Press’, The Royal Opera House Covent Garden programme Les Pêcheurs de Perles, October, 27-34. (2010)

‘A source of lyricism’, The Royal Opera House Covent Garden programme Roméo et Juliette, October, 32-6. (2010)

‘Sentiment and Reminiscence’, The Royal Opera House Covent Garden programme Manon, September, 25-31. (2010)

‘Massenet and the Manon score’, The Royal Opera House presents The Royal Ballet programme Manon, October, 19-24. (2008)

‘Cinderella Takes a Roman Holiday’, The Royal Opera House Covent Garden programme La Cenerentola, December, 9-12. (2007)

‘Massenet and Thaïs: The Religious Context’, The Royal Opera House Covent Garden programme Thaïs, June, 29-33. (2007)

‘« The island’s full of noises, sounds and voices »: l’écriture vocale de Thomas Adès’, in L’Avant-Scène Opéra : Thomas Adès The Tempest, 222, September/October, 80-3. (2004)

Werther at Home and Abroad’, Royal Opera House Covent Garden programme Werther, September, 43-8. (2004)

‘Explosive Opera: La Navarraise face à la critique londonienne’, in L’Avant-Scène Opéra : Massenet Sapho - La Navarraise, 217, November/December, 80-1. (2003)

Book Reviews

Forthcoming Music & Letters: Michela Niccolai, La dramaturgie de Gustave Charpentier, ‘Speculum Musicae’, xvii. (Brepols, 2011), xxxiv + 540 pp. ISBN 978-2-503-54340-6.

Forthcoming H-France: Jann Pasler (ed.), Camille Saint-Saëns and His World. (Princeton University Press, 2012), xviii + 422 pp. ISBN 978-0-691-15556-2. (2013)

H-France: Annegret Fauser & Mark Everist (eds.), Music, Theater, and Cultural Transfer: Paris 1830-1914 (University of Chicago Press, 2009), 439 pp. ISBN-13: 978-0-226-23926-2. (2011)

Music & Letters: Pauline Girard, Léo Delibes – Lakmé – Dossier de presse parisienne (1883) (Musik-Edition Lucie Galland, 2008), 299 pp. ISBN 978-3-940603-02-9. (2011)

Nineteenth-Century Music Review: Andreas Giger, Verdi and the French Aesthetic: 2010 Verse, Stanza, and Melody in Nineteenth-Century Opera (Cambridge University Press, 2008), 294 pp. ISBN 978-0-521-87843-2 (hb). (2010)

Music & Letters: Robert Ignatius Letellier, An Introduction to the Dramatic Work of Giacomo Meyerbeer : Operas, Ballets, Cantats, Plays (Ashgate, 2008), 256 pp. ISBN 978-0-7546-6039-2. (2010)

Twentieth-Century Music: Alexandra Wilson, The Puccini Problem: Opera, Nationalism and Modernity (Cambridge University Press, 2007), 321 pp. ISBN-13 978-0-521-85688-1 (hb). (March 2009)

Musicology Australia: Richard Langham Smith & Caroline Potter (eds.), French Music Since Berlioz (Ashgate, 2006), 363 pp. ISBN 0-7546-0282-6. (2008)

Musicology Australia: Barbara L. Kelly & Kerry Murphy (eds.), Berlioz and Debussy: Sources, Contexts and Legacies. Essays in Honour of François Lesure (Ashgate, 2007), 209 pp. ISBN 978-0-7546-5392-9 (2008)

Nineteenth-Century Music Review, 2/2, 122-5: David Charlton (ed.), The Cambridge Companion to Grand Opera (Cambridge University Press, 2003), 496 pp. ISBN 0-521-641187. (2006)

Nineteenth-Century Music Review, 1/2, 112-5: Julian Rushton, The Music of Berlioz (Oxford University Press, 2001), 380 pp. ISBN 0-19-816738-5. (2004)

Nineteenth-Century Music Review, 1/2, 139-41: Meyerbeer in Italy, Opera Rara, CD ORR222. (2004)

Music & Letters, 84/2, 300-2: Roger Parker & Mary Ann Smart (eds.), Reading Critics Reading: Opera and Ballet Criticism in France from the Revolution to 1848 (Oxford University Press, 2001), 271 pp. ISBN 0-19-816697-4. (2003)


Clair Rowden's current research includes a book on opera and parody in France during the second half of the nineteenth century, as well as the preparation of a co-edited volume (with Dr Alexandra Wilson) Transforming Opera, drawn from papers given at the international conference in Cardiff in 2012 in collaboration with Welsh National Opera and the Royal Musical Association, entitled 'Love to Death: Transforming Opera'.

Clair is currently co-organising the international symposium ‘Translation in Music’ (29-30 May 2014) in collaboration with colleagues in the School of European languages, Translation and Politics and Welsh National Opera.

Research Papers, Public Lectures and Performances


‘Parodying Tannhäuser on the Parisian popular stage, 1861’, International Symposium ‘Traces of Performance: Opera, Music Theatre, and Theatre Music in the Long 19th Century’, Sibelius Academy (University of the Arts Helsinki), December 2013.

‘Salome/Trouhanowa: Her Multiple Dances of Death’, Symposium ‘Stages of Death: Men, Women and Suffering in Opera and Ballet’, part of ‘Before I die: A festival for the living about dying’, Cardiff University, May 2013.

‘Immortalité de Massenet à travers la caricature ?’, ‘
Massenet aujourd’hui : héritage et postérité’, Opéra-Théâtre and Université Jean Monnet, Saint-Etienne, France. Invited speaker, October 2012.

‘Massenet et l’Orient : l’exotisme religieux’, ‘Exotisme et Art lyrique’, Festival Les Pêcheurs de Perles, Opéra-Comique, Paris. Invited speaker, June 2012.

Jules Massenet: pour l’amour de l’opéra’, Célébration Jules Massenet, Bibliothèque nationale de France, Paris, January 2012.

‘“Cariculture” in the 1890s’, OBERTO, ‘Beyond Press Cuttings: New Approaches to Reception in Opera Studies’, Oxford Brookes University, Oxford, September 2011.

‘“Cariculture” in the 1890s’, 13th International RIdIM Conference & 1° Congresso Brasileiro de Iconografia Musical, ‘Enhancing Music Iconography research: considering the current, setting new trends’, Universidade Federal da Bahia, Salvador, Brazil, July 2011.

‘“Cariculture” in the 1890s’, AHRC/IMR ‘Francophone Music Criticism, 1789-1914’, International network meeting, University of London Institute in Paris, June 2011.

'Salome, modern opera and dance: a Parisian perspective’, Escuela Nacional de Música, Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, February 2011.

Salome, modern opera and dance: a Parisian perspective’, Sixteenth International Conference on Nineteenth-Century Music, University of Southampton, July 2010.

Salome versus Salomé: The Reception of Strauss’s and Mariotte’s Operas’, AHRC/IMR Francophone Music Criticism 1789-1914, International network meeting, McGill University, Montréal, Canada (November 2009).

‘The German Salome versus the French Salomé: The Reception of Strauss’s and Mariotte’s Operas in Paris, 1907-1910’, ‘The Politics of Opera’, Oxford University European Humanities Research Centre, Taylorian Institution, St. Giles’ (October 2009).

‘The German Salome versus the French Salomé: The Reception of Strauss’s and Mariotte’s Operas in Paris, 1907-1910’, ‘Richard Strauss im europäischen Kontext’, Richard-Strauss-Institut, Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Germany. Invited speaker (September 2009).

‘Loïe Fuller and Salomé: the unveiling of a myth’, John Bird Seminar, Cardiff University (November 2008).

'Loïe Fuller and Salomé: The Unveiling of a Myth', Cardiff University, 11 November 2008, and at the IGRS/IMR conference 'Opera, Exoticism and Visual Cuture: The Fin de Siècle and its legacy', London, 25-27 September 2008

'Loïe Fuller and Salomé: ballets by Gabriel Pierné (1895) and Florent Schmitt (1907)', Université Jean Monnet, St-Etienne, 13 June 2008

'Opera and Caricature in the French fin-de siecle press: Massenet's Thaïs, a case study', for 'Music, Body, Stage: The Iconography of Music Theatre and Opera', conference organised jointly by the Research Centre for Music Iconography and Repertoire International d'Iconographie Musicale, CUNY, 11-14 March 2008

'Decentralisation and Colonisation at the Théâtre des Arts, Rouen, 1889-1891', 14th International Conference on Nineteenth-Century Music, Manchester University, 2006

'L'amour sacré et le sacre de l'amour: l'homme saint chez Massenet', Colloque Massenet, Saint-Etienne, France, 2005

'Pamplune - Paris - Londres: La Navarraise face à la presse', Colloque Massenet, Saint-Etienne, France, 2003