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Robert Shay

(b Westminster, London, Jan 1648; d Oxford, Dec 14, 1710). English scholar, composer and music collector. He matriculated at Christ Church, Oxford (after early training in mathematics at Westminster School), in 1662, receiving the BA, MA and DD degrees in 1666, 1669 and 1682 respectively. He took holy orders and was assigned the rectorate at Wem, Shropshire, but chose to remain at Christ Church, becoming a canon in 1681 and dean (a unique position in Oxford as head of both college and cathedral) in 1689, also serving as vice-chancellor of the University of Oxford, 1692–5. He was a leader of the Oxford resistance to James II's Catholic advances, and under William III he became one of the chief defenders of High Church practices, publicly opposing both the comprehension of non-Anglicans and revisions to the prayer book. He was an industrious and practically minded scholar, producing books on logic, heraldry and architecture, designing a number of Oxford buildings, serving as draftsman and engraver for the Oxford Almanacks, and producing a sizable body of compositions for the English cathedral service. His account of Greek music survives in manuscript (...

Article

Sarah Fuller

(b 1163; d Jan 27, 1225). French chronicler of St Martial of Limoges and monk. Received as a boy scholar at St Martial in 1177, Itier held a succession of important offices, culminating in appointments as librarian (1204) and precentor (by 1211), posts he evidently held concurrently. Annotations in Itier's hand, scattered through surviving remnants of the St Martial library, testify to his interest in preserving the monastery books. One manuscript that he had bound includes a collection of early polyphonic music. Other musical manuscripts from the St Martial collection very probably owe their survival to his care.

Although not himself a professional scribe, Itier had charge of the monastery scriptorium and knew how to notate music. One composition in his hand, a Parisian motet based on the duplum of Perotinus's four-voice organum Sederunt ( F-Pn lat.2208, f.1), shows a musical connection between Paris and St Martial in Itier’s lifetime. The chronicle written by Itier is a central source of information on the monastery....

Article

Nicoletta Demetriou

(b Lefkonoiko, May 5, 1904; d Nicosia, May 10, 2004). Cypriot church cantor, Byzantine music scholar, and folk song collector and singer. He studied Byzantine music with Stylianos Hourmouzios in Nicosia (1921–4). He continued his studies in Byzantine music with Ioannis Sakellarides and Spyros Kapsaskis at the National Conservatoire of Athens, where he also studied Western music (1933–4). In 1935 he was appointed chief cantor (protopsaltis) at Agios Ioannis, the archiepiscopal cathedral in Nicosia, where he remained until the end of his life. In 1934 he became the first person to make commercial recordings of Cypriot folk songs. The ten songs he recorded were issued by HMV in Athens. In 1951 he published Kypriaki Laïki Mousa (Cypriot Popular Muse), the largest collection of Cypriot folk songs up to that time, which contained 83 transcriptions in both Byzantine and staff notation.

As a Byzantine music scholar he published 13 books, which covered different aspects of liturgical chanting. He was also the founder of a Byzantine music school in Nicosia (...

Article

Miloš Velimirović

(b Voznesensk, Kostroma province, 5/Sept 17, 1838; d Kostroma, 8/Dec 21, 1910). Russian writer on church music . Voznesensky graduated from the Kostroma Seminary in 1860 and from the Moscow Theological Academy in 1864. He served as teacher of chant in the Kostroma Seminary until 1883, when he became an inspector of the Riga Seminary until 1894; he then served as head priest of the cathedral of the Trinity, Kostroma. In the late 1880s and in the 1890s he published several volumes of studies dealing with the different varieties of chant in Russian churches. His works are basically compilations, and eclectic in nature. He did only a minimal amount of original research on the historical evolution of Russian chant, but he was among the first in Russia to investigate the melodic traditions of south-western Russian provenance from the 17th and 18th centuries preserved in Western staff notation. He translated into Russian a treatise of the ‘method’ of the Greco-Slavonic chanting originally written in Latin by Ioan de Castro (Rome, ...