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F.E. Kirby

(b Immecke, nr Meinerzhagen, 1536; d Dortmund, Aug 6, 1609). German theorist, teacher and Kantor. He was educated first in Münster and Dortmund, and later at Cologne University where he received the MA in 1560. After serving as teacher, Kantor and administrator for several years in various schools, mainly in Dortmund, he took up a post in 1567 as Kantor at the famous Reinoldi School there; he became Rektor in 1582 in succession to his former teacher and long-standing friend and colleague, Johann Lambach. His work in this post was widely acclaimed and in 1587 he was made Comes Palatinus by Emperor Rudolf II.

He is important for his treatise Erotematum musicae, originally published in 1573 under the title Musicae erotematum, and subsequently reprinted three times. The treatise, of the musica practica type, presents the fundamentals of music in question and answer form. For his formulations Beurhaus borrowed considerably, as was customary in a treatise of this kind, from other German theorists of the time, notably Agricola, Faber (both Gregor and Heinrich), Figulus, Galliculus, Ornithoparchus, Wilfflingseder and Zanger....

Article

Katy Romanou

(b Athens, Greece, May 5, 1969). Greek musicologist specialising in Byzantine music, university professor, cantor, and choir conductor. Chaldaeakes studied theology at the University of Athens. Due to his musical talent and vast knowledge of church music, he was employed in 1992 in the newly established music department of the same university, to assist professor Gregorios Stathis, the first teacher of Byzantine music in the department. In 1998 he earned the PhD in musicology there, and in 1999 he was elected a faculty member of the music department.

He is a diligent and ingenious researcher, with over 150 publications in Greek and other languages on Byzantine and post-Byzantine music and musicians. His scientific competence is well represented in the voluminous collection of Stathis’ writings that he edited in 2001. Aiming at closer communication between Greek and Western musicologists, he has collaborated with musicologists in the USA, England, Austria, Denmark, and Russia. As of ...

Article

Argia Bertini

revised by Giulia Anna Romana Veneziano

(b Florence, July 8, 1638; d Florence, Jan 16, 1703). Italian composer, teacher, music editor, theorist, organist and singer. He spent his entire life as a priest in Florence. On 1 August 1663 he was appointed chaplain at the cathedral, S Maria del Fiore, where he was also active as an organist and singer. He was particularly admired as a teacher, and it was this above all that determined the nature of his publications; the numerous reprints particularly of Il cantore addottrinato and Scolare addottrinato bear witness to the popularity of his methods. In these two manuals he sought to establish rules for the effective composition and performance of church music, contributing, according to his contemporaries, to the codification of the ‘true rule of ecclesiastical singing’. However, he is better remembered for his Corona di sacre canzoni and Colletta di laude spirituali, which have great importance for the final phase in the history of the ...

Article

Claude V. Palisca

[Vincentio, Vincenzio]

(b S Maria a Monte, Tuscany, probably in the late 1520s; d Florence, bur. July 2, 1591). Italian theorist, composer, lutenist, singer and teacher. He was the leader of the movement to revive through monody the ancient Greek ideal of the union of music and poetry.

Galilei was probably born later than his traditionally accepted date of birth of about 1520. As a youth he studied the lute. It was probably his playing that attracted the attention of Giovanni de' Bardi, his principal patron, who facilitated his theoretical studies with Zarlino in Venice, probably about 1563. By that time he had settled in Pisa, where in 1562 he married a member of a local noble family. The scientist Galileo (who was born in 1564) was the first of his six or seven children; another was the lutenist Michelagnolo Galilei (b 18 Dec 1575; d 3 Jan 1631...

Article

Susan Feder

(b New York, NY, Sept 22, 1899; d Plainfield, NJ, May 23, 1979). American soprano and folklorist. She studied voice in New York with Cesare Stunai, Henry Russell, and Katherine Opdycke, and made her debut in 1929, as Gounod’s Marguerite, with the Quebec Opera Company, Montreal. During the 1930s, while continuing to sing opera in New York, Philadelphia, and elsewhere (her roles included Aida, Tosca, and Carmen), she became interested in American folk music and folklore and began collecting songs, particularly from residents of the Pine Barrens of New Jersey and the Zuni Indians of New Mexico, about both of which she lectured and wrote articles. Her recital programs (from 1937) ranged from Hopkinson and Billings to MacDowell, Farwell, and Gershwin (often performed from manuscript); she also sang Native American songs in original languages and folksongs from all over North America. A frequent performer on radio, she was the soloist on ...

Article

Don Harrán

(b ?Bourges, c1430–40; d ?Paris, 1499). French singer and scholar. He was the author of two tracts on verbal accentuation in plainchant. His early years seem to have been spent in Bourges, where he became a canon of Notre Dame de Sales (his familiarity with the Bourges chant tradition is clear from his writings). Later he was in Paris at the Collège de Navarre, where he enrolled in the 1450s as a student in the arts faculty and from 1465 in theology. He described himself as a ‘scholastic theologian’, that is, engaged in religious studies, and as a concentor, probably the associate of the cantor or precentor in singing the soloist portions of chant in the collegiate chapel services. In 1497 he was appointed rector of the University of Paris, though his tenure lasted only five months.

Of his 12 known publications, five are editions of liturgical books and five relate to various religious topics. In two others on music (ed. in Harrán) he countered the attacks, within the Collège, of certain ‘humanists’ (i.e. grammarians), who contended that music played havoc with the sacred texts. Le Munerat used every argument he could to refute their assertions and demonstrate that music, on the strength of its long tradition preserved in the chant books, could rightly ignore grammatical quantity in items subject to musical as against verbal logic. In the first treatise, ...

Article

Katy Romanou

[ConstantinosConstantine](Alexandros)

(b Constantinople [Istanbul], May 19, 1866 or 1874; d Athens, July 9, 1949). Greek musicologist, music teacher, cantor, and composer. He was crucial in organizing a systematic teaching of Byzantine music in Greece and in establishing a uniform repertory and mode of interpretation in all church rites. After studying philology and theology in Constantinople and serving there as a cantor and a music teacher, he moved to Athens in 1904 to organize a course of Byzantine music in the Conservatory of Athens, an institution fully adapted to German and French music education. Through his articles (mainly in the music periodicals Phorminx (1901–10) and his own Nea [New] Phorminx (1921–2)), his lectures, and the performances he gave with his students, he was successful in changing prevailing ideas and practices, spreading the concept of the importance of preserving the ‘original’ sources.

The influence of equal temperament over Byzantine music performance was another concern of his. He organized concerts with the string professors of the Conservatory instructing them to use unorthodox tunings. In collaboration with the mathematician Stavros Vrachamis he designed, for teaching purposes, a keyboard of 42 keys in each octave, capable of producing all scales of the Byzantine echoi. An organ and a few harmoniums were constructed in 1924 in G.F. Steinmeyer’s factory in Oettingen in Germany; they were funded by his student Eva Palmer-Sikelianos, the American wife of the poet Angelos Sikelianos. Psachos gave the instruments her name (...

Article

Gerard Béhague

(b Mexico City, Nov 11, 1932). Mexican ethnomusicologist, singer, percussionist and music administrator. She studied at the Colegio Juan de Dios Peza in San Luis Potosí (BA in philosophy and letters), the National Conservatory of Music in Mexico City (singing and percussion, 1959–67) and the Idyllwild School of Music of the University of Southern California, Los Angeles (1965–70). Concurrently she lectured extensively on Mexican folk music in the USA and Europe and pursued a career as a performer. In 1966 she became head of the Sección de Investigaciones Musicales and in 1974 director of the Centro Nacional de Investigación, Documentación e Información Musical of the Instituto Nacional de Bellas Artes and of the instrument museum of the same institute, where she also inaugurated the annual courses in ethnomusicology (1967–72). As an official researcher of the institute, she has studied and published in the areas of Mexican music history, folklore, dance, and ethnomusicology....

Article

Armineh Grigorian

revised by Robert Atayan and Aram Kerovpyan

[Gomidas Vartabed; Soghomonian, Soghomon]

(b Kütahya, Turkey, Oct 8, 1869; d Paris, Oct 22, 1935). Armenian composer, ethnomusicologist, choral conductor, singer and teacher. One of the first Armenians to have a classical Western musical education, as well as instruction in the music of his own people, he laid the foundations for a distinctive national style in his many songs and choruses, all of which are deeply influenced by the folk and church traditions of Armenia. His work on Armenian folksong is also of musicological importance.

Robert Atayan, revised by Aram Kerovpyan

Both of his parents (his father Gevorg Soghomonian was a cobbler) had gifts for music and poetry; in 1881, however, the boy was orphaned and sent to Armenia to study at the Gevork’ian Theological Seminary in Vagharshapat (now Edjmiadzine), and was ordained as a celibate priest in 1894, being given the name Komitas (a 7th-century Catholicos who was also a hymn composer). There his beautiful voice and his musical talents attracted notice, and under Sahak Amatuni’s guidance he mastered the theory and practice of Armenian liturgical singing. He also made decisive contact with folksong, to the collection and study of which he gave himself wholeheartedly. When he had only just learnt Armenian modern notation he set about recording the songs of the Ararat valley peasants and immigrant Armenians of other regions. Although he had no knowledge of European music theory, he harmonized these songs for performance with a student choir at the academy. His earliest surviving collection of folk melodies dates from ...

Article

Matthew Harp Allen

(b Madras [now Chennai], India, Aug 13, 1927; d Hartford, CT, Sept 10, 2002). flutist, vocalist, and ethnomusicologist of Indian birth. Born into a family of musicians and dancers, he received his musical training from his mother T. Jayammal and from flutist T.N. Swaminatha Pillai, an MA in economics from Annamalai University (1951), and a PhD in ethnomusicology from Wesleyan University (1975).

He first came to the United States as a Fulbright scholar at UCLA (1958–60), was reader and head of the department of Indian music at the University of Madras (1961–6), and returned to the United States, where he studied ethnomusicology at Wesleyan University (1967–1970), taught at the California Institute of the Arts (1970–5), and then worked in the faculty of Wesleyan University (1975–2002).

He was honored in India with the Kalaimamani Award by the government of Tamil Nadu (...