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University of Toronto Scarborough
Music and Culture

Listening to Music ~ VPMA93H3S ~ Lecture Notes Week 7: Religion and Ritual Early Christian Vocal Music Plainchant Gregorian chant Monophonic Varied melodies Alternation between solo and group singing Plainchant: Text Setting Syllabic Melismatic Neumatic Plainchant: Modes Example: D mode or Dorian D is the keynote Plainchant: Rhythm No clearly defined metre Example 1: Kyrie (plainchant) Roman Catholic Mass Greek Text: Kyrie eleison Christe eleison Kyrie eleison Lord, have mercy Christ, have mercy Lord, have mercy Mode: G mode (Mixolydian) Text Setting: melismatic; some neumatic Polyphony Paris Notre Dame Cathedral Leonius and Perotinus Magnus Liber Organi (Great Book of Polyphony) Example 2: Perotinus Viderunt Omnes (fourvoice polyphony) 1199 Mass for Christmas day Monophonic sections Choir Free rhythm (essentially rhythmless Yudkin) Polyphonic sections 2 Solo singers Clear rhythms Islamic Ritual Call to Prayer Adhn (Arabic) Uttered five times daily Purpose: communicate using spoken words Not considered singing heightened speech Example 3: Islamic Call to Prayer Allhu akbar, Allhu akbar God is great, God is great, Ashhadu an l ilha illa llh I testify that there is no god but God. Ashhadu anna Muhammadan I testify that Muhammad rasl Allh is the prophet of God Hayya al lsalt Come to prayer. Hayya al lfalh Come to salvation. AlSalt khayr min alnawn Prayer is better than sleep. Allhu akbar, Allhu akbar God is great, God is great. L ilha ill llh There is no god but God. Musical Characteristics Single melodic line (monophonic) Free rhythm Musical mode Some improvisation Text: Arabic Text setting: Neumatic melismatic Cultural Context Islam Muhammad Sunni Shiah Sufi Prayer (Five timesday facing Mecca) Muezzin (sounds call to prayer from the minarets on mosques) Categories of music Nonmusiqa (nonmusic) Legitimate Musiqa (music) Some legitimate; some controversial Sensuous music Illegitimate
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