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The Modern Invention of Medieval Music: Scholarship, Ideology, Performance [Anglais] [Broché]

Daniel Leech-Wilkinson

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Description de l'ouvrage

21 juin 2007 Musical Performance and Reception
Medieval music has been made and remade over the past two hundred years. For the nineteenth century it was vocal, without instrumental accompaniment, but with barbarous harmony that no one could have wished to hear. For most of the twentieth century it was instrumentally accompanied, increasingly colourful and increasingly enjoyed. At the height of its popularity it sustained an industry of players and instrument makers, all engaged in recreating an apparently medieval performance practice. During the 1980s it became vocal once more, exchanging colour and contrast for cleanliness and beauty. But what happens to produce such radical changes of perspective? And what can we learn from them about the way we interact with the past? How much is really known about the way medieval music sounded? Or have modern beliefs been formed and sustained less by evidence than the personalities of scholars and performers, their ideologies and their musical tastes?

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Descriptions du produit

Revue de presse

"This book is a good read for anyone who is interested in medieval music or has an interest in how history, particularly music history, is written and developed." Music Educators Journal

"Part histoiography and part reception history, this meticulously researched volume reminds readers that no attempt to re-create the music of the past is likely to avoid doing sos through perspectives that are decidedly embedded in the present. Highly recommended." Choice

"The Modern Invention of Medieval Music is n important book. It raises fundamental questions about the relation among music, performance, and historical writing. It belongs on the reading lists of every graduate course in musicological methods, and by extension in the hands of any musicologist interested in how and (more importantly) why we write about music. I cannot praise this book enough for its imagination, daring and élan. It is a book that hits us where we live." Current Musicology, Thomas Irvine

Biographie de l'auteur

Daniel Leech-Wilkinson is a writer and broadcaster on medieval music. He is Reader in Historical Musicology at King's College, London and his previous books include studies and editions of the fourteenth-century poet and composer Guillaume de Machaut.

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Première phrase
Anyone interested in early music, unless they are British and under about twenty-five, will have grown up with the idea that medieval polyphony uses instruments, and lots of them: in songs they play the tenor and contratenor, often join the singer of the cantus in unison or at the octave; in sacred music they play the cantus firmus and accompany the voices singing the other parts. Lire la première page
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Couverture | Copyright | Table des matières | Extrait | Index | Quatrième de couverture
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5.0 étoiles sur 5 How early music performers got that way 10 février 2003
Par Jerome F. Weber - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format:Relié
The author tells us how medieval and early Renaissance music acquired its voices-cum-instruments interpretation, then shows that the recent shift to unaccompanied voices in music of these periods is the recovery of an earlier understanding. The first chapter, "The invention of the voices-and-instruments hypothesis," shows that those who rediscovered old music in the 19th century considered it purely vocal music. Even Hugo Riemann in his Musik Lexicon (1892 and 1893 editions) agreed completely. But in his 1905 edition, Riemann insisted that untexted parts of polyphonic songs were played on instruments, and many phrases of texted melodies were actually instrumental preludes, interludes and postludes. This soon became the standard point of view, for Riemann's book was a popular and influential reference. Guido Adler was one of the few scholars who disagreed. Medieval illustrations of singers and instrumentalists were misinterpreted to reinforce this thinking. In chapter 2, "The re-invention of the a cappella hypothesis," he recounts the early reaction to this orthodoxy in the 1950s and the turning point of Christopher Page's 1977 article in Early Music. Since then, Page, Andrew Parrott and Paul Hillier have led many performances and recordings that demonstrated the sound of early music without instruments, and David Fallows supported their efforts in his writings. Two more chapters fill in the background of the arguments. National prejudices and Nazi ideology come into play, and details are provided. No one who listens to early music will want to pass up this magisterial treatment of its 20th-century evolution. The fight is not yet over, for most recordings of this music still use instruments in the fashion that Leech-Wilkinson thoroughly discredits in this engaging book.
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