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Hildegard of Bingen

The transition from pure monophony to complex polyphony is a gradual one. Donald Macleod begins by looking at the life and music of the self-taught Hildegard of Bingen.

Donald Macleod begins this week by looking at the life and music one of the most celebrated women composers of the middle ages: Hildegard of Bingen.

The transition from pure monophony to complex polyphony was a gradual one. It is argued that polyphony was never entirely absent from European music-making; nor did monophony suddenly go out of fashion. Nevertheless, a fascinating development can be traced between the 12th and 14th centuries, with new musical forms, new rhythmic modes, and new methods of musical notation.

Thanks to recordings in recent decades the abbess Hildegard has been propelled from obscurity into the canon of women composers. She not only composed the Latin words for which she supplied the melodies - she also ran her own monastery, designed the eccentric outfits for her high-born nuns, and wrote on a variety of subjects, from visions to the practical uses of birds, beasts and trees.

O viridissima virga
Gothic Voices
Christopher Page, director

O presul vere civitatis
Oxford Camerata,
Jeremy Summerly, director

O Jerusalem (de sancto Ruperto)
Emma Kirkby, soprano
Gothic Voices
Christopher Page, director

Favus Distillans
Anonymous 4

O ignee spiritus, O cohors militae floris
O viriditas digiti Dei
Sabine Lutzenberger, soprano & bells
Baptiste Romain, medieval vielles & bowed lyre

Columba aspexit
Emma Kirkby, soprano
Gothic Voices
Christopher Page, director

Producer Geoff Ballinger.

1 hour

Last on

Mon 31 Jul 2017 18:30

Music Played

  • Hildegard von Bingen

    O viridissima virga

    Ensemble: Gothic Voices.
    • Hyperion : CDS44251/3.
    • Hyperion.
    • 6.
  • Hildegard von Bingen

    presul vere civitatis - sequence

    Choir: Oxford Camerata. Conductor: Jeremy Summerly.
    • NAXOS : 8.550998.
    • NAXOS.
    • 6.
  • Hildegard von Bingen

    O Jerusalem aurea civitas - sequence

    Performer: Gothic Voices. Singer: Emma Kirkby. Director: Christopher Page.
    • HYPERION : CDA 66039-.
    • HYPERION.
    • 4.
  • Hildegard von Bingen

    Favus distillans Ursula - respond

    Ensemble: Anonymous 4.
    • HARMONIA MUNDI : HMU-907200.
    • HARMONIA MUNDI.
    • 5.
  • Hildegard von Bingen

    O lucidissima Apostolorum - respond

    Performer: Per Sonat. Singer: Sabine Lutzenberger.
    • CHRISTOPHORUS CHR77376.
    • CHRISTOPHORUS.
    • 14.
  • Hildegard von Bingen

    Columba aspexit per cancellos - sequence

    Singer: Emma Kirkby. Ensemble: Gothic Voices. Director: Christopher Page.
    • Hyperion : CDS44251/3.
    • Hyperion.
    • 1.

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