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Thread: Is Solesmes Chant HIP?

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    Default Is Solesmes Chant HIP?

    I have a friend who tells me that the way of singing early music developed in Solesmes in France is historically informed, he thinks that probably people in the early church sang liturgical music like the Solesmes people do.

    I want to know if my friend is correct - it would be remarkable if it were true!

    Can anyone put me on to a book which explains in specific terms how the Solesmes people arrived at their conclusions? Or maybe someone is well up enough in this type of music to explain here.
    Last edited by Mandryka; Jun-12-2019 at 17:23.

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    Sr. Moderator Taggart's Avatar
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    From another thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Mandryka View Post
    I’ve started to get very interested in chant because I’ve been inspired by Marcel Pérès’s book Les Voix de Plain-Chant, if you can read French I recommend it enthusiastically. He is very anti-Solesmes, which he argues is a 19th century aberration founded on inappropriate philological principles.
    From the same thread

    Quote Originally Posted by Taggart View Post
    See http://www.ccwatershed.org/Gregorian/ for comparisons between standard and Solesmes chant.

    Some of the You Tube videos have died. Lesson 7 is very interesting on Mocquereau's method. Dom Gregory Murray's comments are particularly apposite.


    The Nullam Causam channel on You Tube has a range of videos linking to the ccwatershed site.
    Music begins where words leave off. Music expresses the inexpressible.

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    Yes I saw that and thank you, but as far as I can see he doesn't explain the philological and musicological principals which the Solesmes people feel permit them to move from neumes to notes and notes to sounds. So for example in

    http://www.ccwatershed.org/media/pdf...14-49-29_0.pdf

    I read

    Having studied the Medieval manuscripts, Pothier became convinced that the notes were shaped differently in the Medieval manuscripts to make them easier to sing, not because they were intended to be sung with the rhythm of the “measured” music of Renaissance polyphony (with longa, brevis, semibrevis, etc.)
    but this is useless without an explanation of Pothier's reasoning. See my problem?!
    Last edited by Mandryka; Jun-12-2019 at 18:11.

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    Even if it was HIP, it would include lots of theories, which never can be decisively confirmed. HIP gradually loses its meaning the farther back in time we are, because the percentage of theory gets larger and larger. We may reach a point where an intuitively generated opinion is more "true" than a scientifical opinion.

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    Senior Member RICK RIEKERT's Avatar
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    A good short book is Katherine Bergeron's Decadent Enchantments: The Revival of Gregorian Chant at Solesmes. Amy Danielle Waddle's article beginning on page 11 of the attached edition of the journal Sacred Music is also relevant.

    Waddle -Gregorian Chant.pdf

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    Thanks Rick. I’ve only just found the time to read the article and then only once. I didn’t know there was such a divergence of opinion between Poithier and Mocquereau. Neither was I aware that Mary Berry was such an open minded and enlightened figure, and that’s renewed my interest in her work. I’ve never come across Reznikoff before so there’s something new for me to look into there.

    The area is especially interesting because, in making sense of the old chant manuscripts, you have to deal with oral traditions of singing. I’ve bought Peter Jeffrey’s book, Re-envisioning Musical Cultures, it arrived yesterday and at first glance it is interesting.

    70472EB1-4EF0-4510-9227-3C0B35000539.png

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