Explorations – No 30 Jun 2001


BRYAL STEWART, Calvé in Australia

An extract from Stewart’s manuscript ‘Three Emmas in the Time of Jean de Reszke’ on the personal and professional life of singer Calvé, born Rosa-Noémie de Roquer born in Decazeville, Aveyron in 1858. Beginning with her early discovery of singing before following her from Brussels and Paris to Italy and on to New York. Her highly celebrated five-month tour of Australia, arranged by the Taits is recounted and includes details about her performances in Melbourne, Sydney, Brisbane and Adelaide.

Keywords: Calvé, Rosa-Noemie de Roquer, singer, Rose Emma Calvert, Jules Puget, Salomé, La Scala

COLIN NETTELBECK, Happy & Glorious: French at the Sydney Olympics

The slightly awkward but revealing question of whether French or English would be used as the official language for the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney was quite quickly overcome in the initial moments of the Games. The author, with the advantage of witnessing coverage from both countries, details views from both sides and leads to a discussion of the impact of French as an official language of the IOC Charter and its place as a global language.

Keywords: Pierre de Coubertin, Mary Kostakidis, Cathy Freeman, French broadcasting, 2000 Sydney Olympic Games

PATRICIA CLANCY, Tasma — A Woman Novelist of Colonial Australia — and ‘Continental’ Men

Late nineteenth century Australian novelist, Tasma (Jessie Couvreur), often attracts less attention than her contemporaries Ada Cambridge and Rosa Praed, yet Tasma’s literary input and import have been given more prominence recently with the publication of her biography by Patricia Clarke as well as timely reprints of her work. Clancy gives a lively and generous account of her childhood in Hobart and her fascinating life split between Australia and Europe, which deeply informed her literature. She also explores Tasma’s rich accounts of the ‘Continental’ men she came across.

Keywords: Tasma, Jessie Couvreur, Piper of Piper’s Hill, nineteenth century literature, continental men, women writers, colonial Australia


Peter Cochrane (ed.), Remarkable Occurrences: The National Library of Australia’s First 100 Years 1901-2001, reviewed by Edward Duyker