Lectures: Jewish art music in Europe in the 17th and 18th centuries (Italy, France, Holland)

4 lectures of 2 hours each given by Hervé Roten

The Elie Wiesel Institute organizes with the European Institute of Jewish Music a four courses cycle, on January 5, 12, 19 and 26, 2017 from 6h30 pm to 8h30 pm.

For centuries, Jewish music has been transmitted orally. With a few exceptions – such as Ovadya the Norman proselyte from the 12th century, Jewish people did not write their music. We have to wait the Italian Renaissance in the 16th century and beginning of the 17th century to see the first music scores written down and performed in a Jewish surrounding. Though these music scores do not reflect the everyday musical practice of the Jews, it gives precious information about the integration of Italian Jews to their cultural environment. That’s how we see that at the end of the 16th century, there were polyphonic choirs, sometimes accompanied by instruments, in the synagogues of Padoue, Ferrare and Mantovia. In Venice in 1622-23, Salomone Rossi (ca 1570 – ca 1630) publishes an important collection of liturgical Hebrew compositions, called Ha-shirim asher li-Shelomo, which contains 33 choirs of 3 to 8 voices for the synagogue cult.

This movement of opening, which expands during the century of the enlightments, will also reach the Jewish communities of Amsterdam and the Comtat Venaissin. In the 18th century, the number of music works written in the art style of the time multiplies, in Italy, France or Holland.

This course, dedicated to the memory of Israel Adler (1925-2009), specialist of Baroque Jewish music, will be illustrated by many audiovisual examples, in order to discover the richness of Jewish music practices in the Baroque and Classical times, between 1623 and 1774.

Bibliography
– Israel Adler, La pratique musicale savante dans quelques communautés juives en Europe aux XVIIème et XVIIIème siècles, Paris – La Haye, Mouton & Co, 1966, 2 vol.
– Don Harran, Salamone Rossi, Jewish Musician in Late Renaissance Mantua. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999.
– Hervé Roten, Musiques liturgiques juives (inclus un CD), Cité de la Musique/Actes Sud, 1998.
– Amnon Shiloah, Les traditions musicales juives, Maisonneuve & Larose, 1995.

Discography
– Musiques juives baroques, Venise, Mantoue, Amsterdam (1623-1774) – hommage à Israel Adler, Coll. Patrimoines musicaux des Juifs de France, vol. 10, Buda Musique, 2011.
– Synagogal Music in the baroque (Amsterdam, Italie et Sud de la France), AMTI CD 9101, C.D.I. Ltd, ed. I. Adler, Israel, 1991.

Schedule: Thursdays, January 5, 12, 19 and 26, 2017, 6:30 pm to 8:30 pm
Price: €65 (€30 for students)

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