Vancouver Early Music Mediæval Programme: “Cantigas de Santa Maria” 1 – 12 August 2011

28 June 2011 Comments Off on Vancouver Early Music Mediæval Programme: “Cantigas de Santa Maria” 1 – 12 August 2011

Hurdy-gurdy players; f. 160, Cantigas de Sta. María de Alfonso X El Sabio, ms E (Códice de El Escorial)

Information straight from the horse’s mouth:

[Opening Event: Concert by Sequentia ensemble for mediæval music, Sunday evening, July 31]

Mediæval Programme: “Cantigas de Santa Maria”
Devotional Songs at the court of Alfonso el Sabio, King of Castille and León (d. 1284)
An intensive course designed for highly motivated, trained vocalists and instrumentalists, such as young professional musicians, university, conservatory and college students, and teachers.

There *may* be some space remaining for auditors…

Following Sequentia’s 2008 Vancouver summer course, which concentrated on the music of the 12th-century Codex Calixtinus from Santiago de Compostela, we now propose a 2-week intensive course dedicated to the most famous of all Spanish mediæval musical repertoires, the Cantigas de Santa Maria (CSM) from the court of Alfonso X (el Sabio), King of Castille and León (1221-1284). As an adjunct to this huge repertoire of vernacular monophonic miracle-stories and praise-songs devoted to the Virgin Mary, we will also examine some of the Latin polyphonic genres of the Codex Las Huelgas, an early 14th-century manuscript from the Cistercian convent of Las Huelgas de Burgos and another renowned source of vocal music from the Iberian peninsula. The course will have as its focus the singing – and storytelling! – of Marian miracles from the CSM, the singer’s use of language and rhetoric, the role of instrumental accompaniment, and a study of the Galician-Portuguese dialect in which these songs were transmitted. In addition to this, the vocalists will delve into the para-liturgical genres of the Codex Las Huelgas; instrumentalists will work independently on techniques for improvisation and creating instrumental music based on the CSM.


Benjamin Bagby – course director

Members of Sequentia ensemble for mediæval music (Paris):
Benjamin Bagby voice & mediæval harp; history; vocal polyphony
Wolodymyr Smishkewych voice & organistrum; Galician language
Norbert Rodenkirchen mediæval instruments (flute & harp); modes; improvisation

Click here for complete details


Even though the April 15, 2011 Scholarship Application Deadline has now passed (results will be announced by Monday, May 16, 2011), it is still possible to register for any of the Programmes if space permits.


Non-Participating Auditors will be welcome at any activity of the Programme; they may sit in on any of the sessions & lectures (except private lessons) but may not actively participate unless specifically invited by the instructors.

Daily or Weekly Auditing Passes for Non-Participating Auditors are available; the weekly passes include tickets for up to two Vancouver Early Music Festival performances taking place during the week(s) of registration.

Click here for detailed Auditing information and fees.

Click here for more on the Cantigas–and here for the full text–and here for some scores–and here for facsimiles, illuminations, discography, and further links

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