Tagged: boston university

Pedro Memelsdorff talk

February 17th, 2014 in Lecture

Ta fin est mon commencement: Composing in Italy in the Late Fourteenth Century

Pedro Memelsdorff (Schola Cantorum Basel)

Friday, February 21, 2014, 10am-1pm

Musicology Seminar Room, 808 Commonwealth Ave, Boston University

This talk explores anew the contrapuntal handicraft, literary background and semiotic implications of works by Johannes Ciconia and Matteo da Perugia.




A music director, a recorder player and a medievalist in musicology, Pedro Memelsdorff was born in Argentina in 1959 and has been living in Europe since 1977. As a musician, he has been a member of Jordi Savall’s Hesperion XXI since 1981 and of the duo Pedro Memelsdorff-Andreas Staier since 1984. In 1987 he founded – and ever since directs – the ensemble Mala Punica, specialized in late medieval polyphony, with which he has performed over four hundred concerts in the major early-music venues in Europe and America and published 8 CDs that have received over forty international awards. As a musicologist, Memelsdorff regularly publishes in the specialized press (Studi Musicali, Acta Musicologica, Recercare, Plainsong & Medieval Music, Brepols, LIM, Galluzzo). At present he is preparing a monograph on the Codex Faenza 117 for Brepols. He is Director of the Schola Cantorum in Basel.

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Il Furioso Concert in April

January 25th, 2013 in Concert Archive

ll Furioso (Victor Coelho & David Dolata, directors), “An early music power trio” and Toccata Classics recording artists, will team up with recorder specialist Aldo Abreu (BU faculty member in Historical Performance), for a concert of virtuoso music of the seventeenth century by Pandolfo Mealli (1630-69) and Bellerofonte Castaldi (1581-1649).

Please join us in the BU Concert Hall (855 Commonwealth Avenue) at 8 pm on April 11th.

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Blue Heron Concert on March 1

January 25th, 2013 in Concert Archive

The vocal ensemble Blue Heron will perform “Divine songs,” a program of songs and masses based on them, featuring the music of Johannes Ockeghem (c. 1420-1497). Pre-concert talk at 7:15pm. Both events are in conjunction with the interdisciplinary conference Voice and Voicelessness in Medieval Europe and Beyond.

Please note the change in venue.
The Castle
225 Bay State Road

For more information about the vocal ensemble Blue Heron, please visit their website: www.blueheronchoir.org.

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Boston Choral Ensemble Concert

January 16th, 2013 in Concert Archive

The Boston Choral Ensemble (Andrew Shenton, music director) will present a concert entitled Déplorations on March 8 at St. Paul’s Church in Cambridge and March 9 at The Cathedral of the Holy Cross in Boston. Both performances will begin at 8pm.

From Professor Shenton:

The act of deploration, or lament, especially for the death of a loved one, has inspired composers to write some of the most powerfully moving music. This concert begins with the famous Deploration on the death of Ockegham by Josquin. In the first of two main sections we contrast Tallis’s settings of the Lamentations of Jeremiah for men’s voices with Tartini’s setting of the Stabat Mater dolorosa for women’s voices. In the second main section, we highlight different approaches to text interpretation with settings of the same text, from the renaissance and from the twentieth century. The concert concludes with the monumental 40-part motet Spem in alium by Tallis, which is a renaissance masterpiece and any performance is always an occasion.

For more details and tickets, please visit bostonchoral.org.

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The Silence of Medieval Singers

January 11th, 2013 in Lecture Archive

1:30-3:00 p.m., Sunday, 14 April 2013 (free and open to the public)
Marshall Room, CFA

The Silence of Medieval Singers

Katarina Livljanić (Ensemble Dialogos / University of Paris – Sorbonne)
Benjamin Bagby (Ensemble Sequentia / University of Paris – Sorbonne)

Investigating how the human singing voice might have sounded in plainchant and other ecclesiastical vocal traditions of the Middle Ages, we find ourselves confronting medieval informants whose written words are surrounded by silence. We scholars and performers have access to medieval musical notation but we do not have access to medieval sounds; our perceptions are based on the singing voices of the living but informed by documents created by those long dead, whose sounds we have never heard.

Among the various strands of medieval musicology, the study of the voice is one of the most closely linked with performance practice; medieval texts about the voice and the notation of vocal music can only be fully discussed and understood when they are linked with vocal practice and made audible today. In the investigation of medieval instruments, it is possible to evaluate visual sources, and based on these to make reconstructions of playable instruments; but in the case of the voice, visual sources can only provide us with very limited, external information, such as the number of singers present and their possible relationship to a written source, or hand and facial gestures. And reconstructions? Today’s singers are the only possible reconstructions. We cannot learn, by studying texts and images, how to sing in the way medieval singers did; performances today will always contain an element of conjecture.

However, if we are pursuing a study of medieval singing out of intellectual curiosity, then we can at least examine here a number of examples from the medieval sources, which could help us to enter by various small doors into the huge realm resounding with the many voices of medieval authors, singers and scribes. Our discussion here will try to take this reality into account as we select specific texts and notated elements, examining these for possible hints about the vocal sounds and techniques of some medieval singers.

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Napoleon’s Castrato: Girolamo Crescentini

January 4th, 2013 in Concert Archive

We are marking the 250th year of the birth of the Chevalier Girolamo Crescentini. In 1806, Napoleon heard him sing in Vienna and brought him back to Paris to become the first court singer (premier chanteur de l’empereur). Crescentini was singing his most famous role, Romeo in Niccola Zingarelli’s Giullietta e Romeo in 1809 when he moved the entire court to tears, including the emperor. Napoleon descended to the stage and, unpinning it from his own coat, awarded Crescentini the order of the Iron Cross of Lombardy, elevating him to a knighthood and the nobility. Crescentini was a famous singer, teacher and composer. This concert will feature his songs for fortepiano and for classical guitar, a solo cantata similar in quality to middle period Beethoven, though with an Italianate cast, and selections from Zingarelli’s Giullietta e Romeo, with mezzo-soprano Mary Gerbi singing the role of Giulietta, from a circa 1820 collection of arias and duets arranged for fortepiano.

Robert Crowe, soprano (Romeo)
Mary Gerbi, mezzo soprano (Giulietta)
Professor Peter Sykes, fortepiano
Professor Victor Coelho, guitar

Please join us on January 30 at 8pm in the Marshall Room for “Napoleon’s Castrato: Girolamo Crescentini (1762-1846).” This event is free and open to the public.

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Upcoming lecture by Joshua Rifkin

January 4th, 2013 in Lecture Archive

On January 29, Professor Rifkin will give a lecture entitled “Counterpoint and Conjecture: Imagining a Lost Motet.”

From Professor Rifkin:
“In April 2012, the Dutch vocal ensemble Cappella Pratensis and I did a series of concerts with music by the marvelous Renaissance master Jacobus Clemens non Papa. We built the program around a mass based on motet a called Gaude lux Donatiane.
“It seemed sensible to include the motet in the program as well. Only problem: the motet no longer exists.
“Bart Demuyt, the head of the Alamire Foundation and the driving force behind the concert, decided that we shouldn’t let that deter us …”

Members of Blue Heron will perform excerpts of the work. Please join us at 5pm in the Marshall Room on the 2nd floor of the BU College of Fine Arts, 855 Commonwealth Avenue. This event is free and open to the public.

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Lecture this Tuesday!

December 9th, 2012 in Lecture Archive

On Tuesday, December 11, BU Professor Patrick Wood Uribe will give a lecture entitled “Devilry and Drink: The Virtuoso Thomas Baltzar (1631?-1663).”

When Thomas Baltzar arrived in England in the 1650s, he astonished audiences with his extraordinary violin playing; one listener even examined his feet to see if they were cloven hooves. Patrick Wood Uribe’s 2008 CD release was the first recording of Baltzar’s unaccompanied violin music, and this year saw the publication of the first edited collection of his solo works. Professor Wood Uribe’s talk is about Baltzar the man, his music, and the world around him.

Please join us in Room 171 of the BU College of Fine Arts (855 Commonwealth Avenue) at 5pm.

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Martin Pearlman: “Performing Handel’s Messiah”

November 28th, 2012 in Lecture Archive

As an introduction to Boston Baroque’s annual and highly acclaimed performances of Handel’s Messiah on December 7-8 at Jordan Hall, Martin Pearlman will discuss the some of the challenges in performing this extraordinary work, explaining how considerations of tempo, singing style, and other performance details form part of a larger dramatic interpretation of Messiah.

Join us in the Marshall Room on the 2nd Floor of the BU College of Fine Arts, 855 Commonwealth Avenue. The lecture will begin at 6:30. This event is free and open to the public.

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Lecture/Demonstration: Anne Azéma

October 25th, 2012 in Lecture Archive

Anne Azéma, acclaimed early music singer and Music Director of the Boston Camerata, will present two lecture / performances for Professor Jeff Kline’s “French Lyric Poetry” class on November 6 and November 8 (with assistance by BU professor and lutenist Victor Coelho on Nov. 8th) in CAS 538 from 12:30-2. Auditors welcome.

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