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Integrated PhD
Faculdade de Ciências Sociais e Humanas | Universidade Nova de Lisboa
Av. de Berna, n.º 26 C
1069-061 Lisboa
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Tel: (+351) 21 790 83 00 (ext. 1583)


Cristina Fernandes is an integrated researcher at INET-MD (NOVA FCSH), where she develops the research project “Music, power and diplomacy in the 18th century: Portugal in the international stage” (since February 2019). Between 2011 and 2017 she carried out a post-doctoral project on the musical practices and the ceremonial of the Royal and Patriarchal Chapel of Lisbon (1716-1834), with a research grant from FCT, and between 2015 and 2017 she coordinated the thematic strand of INET-md “Historical Approaches to Musical Performance”. Born in Guarda (Portugal), she studied piano at the Conservatório de Música da Covilhã before graduating in Musical Sciences at NOVA FCSH. She completed a Master Degree in Musicology at the same institution and received her PhD from the University de Évora (Portugal) in 2010. She took part of several research projects in Portugal and abroad, including the collaboration with the group “Music in Spain: Composition, Reception and Interpretation” (Universidad de La Rioja, Spain). Currently, she integrates the research team for the projects "PERFORMART-Promoting, Patronising and Practising the Arts in Roman Aristocratic Families (1644-1740). The Contribution of Roman Families’ Archives to the History of Performing Arts" (IP: Anne-Madeleine Goulet, ERC Consolidator Grant 2015; host institutions: CNRS, École Française de Rome) and “PROFMUS-To be a musician in Portugal: the social and professional condition of musicians in Lisbon” (INET-md, funded by FCT). She participated in conferences and research seminars in Portugal, Spain, Italy, United Kingdom, France, Belgium, The Netherlands, Austria and Brazil and is the author of several books and articles on XVIII century music and culture, among other subjects. She taught at music schools of different levels, including the Fundação Musical dos Amigos das Crianças, the Academia Nacional Superior de Orquestra (Metropolitana), the Escola das Artes – Univ. Católica Portuguesa (Porto) and the department of Musical Sciences of NOVA FCSH. She is a member of the Directive Board of SPIM-Portuguese Society for Music Research and music critic for the newspaper Público.

Research Project
Music, power and diplomacy in the 18h century: Portugal in the international stage
The topic “Music and Diplomacy” has been attracting increasing interest in the international academic arena but, up to now, it has been scarcely approached in Portugal. This project aims to contribute to a new field of research through the study of the role of music in the exercise of diplomacy by the Portuguese ambassadors and other diplomatic agents in the 18th century. In parallel, it will also consider the action of foreign diplomats in Lisbon. In a first stage, the main focus will be Rome (centre of competition between the Europe ruling houses toward the Papacy); in a second phase cities like Lisbon, Madrid, Vienna, Paris and Utrecht, among others, will provide the context for case studies. Involving a transdisciplinary approach, the investigation intends to bring new insights on how music has shaped the pursuit of power and international relations; to characterize patronage strategies, ceremonial and musical practices in political and festive events (such as solemn entries, religious celebrations, the Te Deum, serenatas, operas, concerts and balls); to analyse the impact of diplomatic networks in cultural transfers and in the circulation of music and musicians, as well as on the training of musicians abroad and on their professional careers.