Music at the end of the First Millennium

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Program: #09-23   Air Date: Jun 01, 2009

Our friends Benjamin Bagby of Sequentia and Katarina Livljanic of Dialogos each have new projects looking at the apocalyptic and strangely haunting music around the year 1000 A.D. We'll hear both "Fragments for the End of Time" and "Abbo Abbas: French Polyphony at the First Millennium" this week.

I. Abbo Abbas: Polyphonies Françises et Anglaises de l'An Mil (Dialogos Ensemble/Katarina Livljaniç). Ambronay CD AMY017.


Music collected under the auspices of Abbo, Abbot of Fleury (c.950-1004).

--Responsory & organum, Winchester, 10th c.: Sancte Benedicte confessor domini ("O Saint Benedict, confessor of the Lord")

--Organum, Winchester, 10th c.: Kyrie Laus herilis utilis & salubris

--Gradual & organum, Fleury: Viderunt omnes fines terrae ("All the ends of the earth have seen the salvation of our God")

--Organum, Winchester: Alleluia Ymera agias/Dies sanctificatus (original in Greek & Latin): ("A hallowed day has dawned for us")

--WULFSTAN WINTONIENSIS (10th c.): Acrostic/"abécédaire" hymn "De Sancto Swithuno": Auxilium, domine ("Lord, grant Your aid to those who beseech You")

II. Endseitfragmente: Fragments for the End of Time (Sequentia Ensemble/Benjamin Bagby). Raum Klang CD RK 2803


--OTFRID von WEIßENBURG (d. Alsace, 875): Evangeleinbuch: De die iudicii, Thes habet er ubar woroltring ("For the entire world a Judgment Day has been set")

--?FULDA (early 9th c.): Heiland: Geng imo tho the godes sunu ("God's Son then chose to walk away")

--Aquitanian, 11th c.: Prophecy of the Erythraean Sibyl: Iudicii signum ("Sign of Judgement--the whole world will begin to sweat")


III. La Vision de Tondal (Dialogos Ensemble/Katarina Livljaniç). Arcana CD A 329


Created in Ireland in 1149, this is the story of a proud knight who comes to see a friend in repayment of a debt. During a huge banquet, he passes out and remains unconscious for three days, where he has a vision of his soul descending into hell, where after many trials it is saved by a guardian angel. When he awakes, he changes his life (a la Ebenezer Scrooge), becomes gentle and humble, and gives away his wealth. It was translated from the Irish to Latin by one "Frater Marcus," and brought to medieval Croatia, where it is preserved in Glagolitic in the Petris Miscellany (1468).

--Glagolitic chant: Gospodin, smiluj se (Kyrie eleison)

--The Vision of Tondal: Zaã noge tvoje sada u tanci ne igraju? ("Why do your legs not dance?")

--Introit, Beneventan chant, 11th c.: Qui habitat in adiutorio altissimi ("Come, you are blest by my Father")

--The Vision of Tondal: A dusreãe ("And the soul said. "Lord, unless you walk in front, those devils will seize me!'")

--The Vision of Tondal: I pridosena dolac strasan ("And they arrived in the frightful valley of death")

--Glagolitic chant: Viruju u jedinoga boga (Credo)

--The Vision of Tondal: I onde bi dusa grebena ("And the soul was seized by devils with dirty nails")

Composer Info

WULFSTAN WINTONIENSIS (10th c.), OTFRID von WEIßENBURG (d. Alsace, 875), FULDA (early 9th c.), Aquitanian, 11th c.,

CD Info

Ambronay CD AMY017, Raum Klang CD RK 2803, Arcana CD A 329

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