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Carmina Carolingiana


7 mixed voices with instruments
Lyre and bowed lyre, citole, harp, gemshorn, reed flute, bells, percussions. 


The "Carmina Carolingiana", epic chants from the time of Charlemagne, are poems from the 9th and 10th centuries, most of them written in Latin outside the boundaries of the liturgy.

The chants selected for this programme are an evocation and dramatization of historical events connected with the Carolingian empire. There are only precious few traces left of this repertoire that testifies to the taste of imperial courts for poetry and the arts. The works selected for this concert are among the very few that have retained their notation, a mere set of neumes drawn above the words.

Their restitution demanded consistent work of research and imagination in order to deliver a plausible version of these jewels of the "Carolingian Renaissance". The programm restores the complete set of these chants, a few poems of which, translated into modern English, allow the audience to grasp their meaning and to discover their epic beauty. The musical environment (lyres, bowed lyre, harp, Merovingian citole, primitive flutes, percussions, bells) is accurately derived from those that appear in the miniatures of the manuscripts of St Martial of Limoges.

- A musical creation supported by the Regional Council of the Pays de la Loire, the Regional Council of Maine et Loire and of SPEDIDAM -