„The Viennese ball tradition is without any doubt part of this city. Different communities make use of this to ensure their feeling of belonging and to transport messages. These communities are of interest to ethnomusicologists because we can interpret their musical demonstrations and ascribe meaning to them. At different balls you will also hear different performances, so it becomes a unique emblem. But you can also find common patterns in the sequence of every ball: the introduction, Quadrille and midnight events are just some examples. The Vienna Ball of Science probably still has to develop its musical identity since something like this takes years. But there is definitely not a lack of corporate identity within the scientific community – and that should stay that way.”
Ursula Hemetek is head of the Department of Folk Music Research and Ethnomusicology at the University of Music and Performing Arts Vienna. 2018 she was awarded the prestigious Wittgenstein Prize for her research in the field of minorities within ethnomusicology.
Foto: Doris Piller