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Re: "Songs to the Invisible God" review...


I'd be willing to guess by the way it sounds that these notes are pretty
consistent with my previous comments.  Note first Dobsay's note that the
books themselves were *read,* which he then contrasts with *chanting* of
non-biblical passages (with or without text; he is not clear here) inserted
as "music" into the ritual.  Dobsay then says how portions of the scripture
were set to chant (he doesn't exactly say that, but his use of
"responsories" deserves the benefit of the doubt) and then interspersed
through an earlier service.  Chances are, this probably not include the
whole text.  You'll also note that his last line discusses the "musical
cycles *to* every book of the Bible," rather than "musical cycles *of* every
book of the Bible."  From my reading, there's no implication here that the
entirely of each book of the Bible was set to chant, and less that it was
compiled into a codex of itself.  Rather, the *ritual surrounding the
reading* was set.  This was certainly common practice back then (many, many
Gregorian chant codices are arranged according to the liturgical calendar),
and remains a practice in several Christian denominations (though the music
may now be exclusively Gregorian chant today).

Again, I may be taking things out of context; plase let me know what you
think of this interpretation.

Be well.

>From: "robert wiener" <wiener (at) mindspring(dot)com>
>To: World music from a Jewish slant <jewish-music (at) shamash(dot)org>
>Subject: Re: "Songs to the Invisible God" review...
>Date: Tue, Mar 21, 2000, 12:31 AM

> Judah,
> I wonder how your comments on Gregorian chant and books of the Bible
> relates to the following excerpt from notes by Laszlo Dobsay to the
> Schola Hungarica recordings subtitled " : Repons Gregoriens sur les
> Textes de La Genese/de La Bible"?
> "In the Christian liturgy the books of Genesis and Exodus were read in
> the offices during the months of February and March.  From time to
> time the recitation was interrupted by chanting in order to lend the
> sustenance of music to the meditation.  In the "responsories" for
> Matins the libretto was drawn from the book of the scriptures that had
> just been read; in this way comprehensive musical cycles to every book
> in the Bible came into existence..."
> Bob

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