Sequentia

Ensemble for Medieval Music. Benjamin Bagby, Director

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Sequentia celebrates its 40th anniversary in March 2017
 
 

Contact

E-mail: info@sequentia.org

Representation
(Europe)

Katja Zimmermann
VCzimmermann@gmx.net

Representation
(exclusive of Europe)

Seth Cooper
Seth Cooper Arts Inc.
4592 Hampton Ave.
Montréal, QC, Canada
www.sethcooperarts.com
sethcooper.arts@gmail.com
Tel: 514-467-5052

 

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Programs

Fragments for the End of Time

Unsar trohtin hat farsalt

Instrumental version of the Freisinger Petruslied, Bavaria (late 9th century)
Source: München, Bayr. Staatsb. Clm 6260, fol. 158v. / Transcription: N. Rodenkirchen

This processional with refrain is one of the oldest surviving melodies found in a German source. The manuscript is neumed throughout, making a transcription possible.

Thes habet er ubar woroltring

‚De die Iudicii’ from the ‚Gospel Book’ of Otfrid von Weissenburg (Alsace, †875)
Source: Heidelberg, Cod.Pal.lat. 52 / Reconstruction: B. Bagby

This heartfelt description of the final judgement is taken from the Evangelienbuch of the Alsatian monk Otfrid von Weissenburg (the first German poet whose name we know), who wrote commentaries and paraphrases on the Gospels in the local German dialect (which he calls Frankish) of his fellow brothers and the nearby noblemen. In a prologue, he states that a pious matron named Judith urged him on in this work. These verses were not intended for silent reading, but were probably ‚performed’ before a partially pre-literate audience in the style of the Germanic oral poetry long appreciated by learned men and women. Several manuscript sources of this text contain musical notation. Here, in an excerpt from the chapter entitled in die iudicii (‚on the Judgement Day’), we experience Otfrid’s very personal involvement with the terrifying story he has to tell.

Text

For the entire world a judgement day has been set, before a powerful court, and we must fear it. I say this loudly: there will be no one who can avoid appearing before this court!

[Refrain]: On that day of judgement it will go well for those who need not worry about their past deeds, and against whom in that hour no accusation can be brought; for them, protection and a path to safety will still be possible!

Even those wretches who have lived on earth just as they pleased, they too will have to appear. It’s difficult for me to say this: all who were born of woman must be present (my heart is terrified at the thought!), to account for their deeds, one after the other, without exception. A woeful judgement day! [Refrain]

There will be no help, believe me, for anyone; nor will anyone be able to escape. Everyone who is convicted there will suffer the eternal pain of hell’s punishment. [Refrain]

Do you know what the prophet of the Lord says about this time? He says there will be great agony. You can read his words: it is a day of anger, of struggle, of suffering and countless terrors. On that day the angels will loudly blow their horns, which will resound over the earth to awaken the dead. [Refrain]

It is the day of storms and darkness – woe!  All sinners will be swept away. What more can I possibly say? It is a day of immense suffering. [Refrain]

Have you read the prophesies, which tell how the Lord will appear threateningly from above, and shake the heavens,? What man on earth could then resist, when the Lord causes even the heavens to quake?  Keep this image in your mind: He will fold up the heavens with His powerful hand, like a book snapped shut. [Refrain]

Truly, this day can be compared with no other, and there can be no thought of escaping it. There will be no way to quickly make a secret plan of evasion; even the smallest thought will become known, this is certain! [Refrain].

Translation: B. Bagby (based on Gisela Vollmann-Profe)

Watch a recording from Jaroslaw, Poland, 2009

Upcoming Concerts

07 June 2018
Berkeley Early Music Festival (Berkeley, California) 
Boethius: Songs of Consolation (Bagby, Marti, Rodenkirchen) North American premiere

9 June 2018
Berkeley Early Music Festival (Berkeley, California)
Monks Singing Pagans

19 July 2018
Amherst Early Music Festival Concerts
The Wanderer (Bagby solo)

19 August 2018
Curio (TI) Switzerland / Garden of the Seven Mountains
European and Japanese Epic Song (Bagby, with Hanna Marti and Sylvain Guignard)

23 August 2018
Antwerpen, Belgium / Laus Polyphoniae Festival
Beowulf

See full concert schedule

 

News

Benjamin Bagby's teaching activities in 2018

In addition to his teaching position at the University of Paris - Sorbonne, where he has taught since 2005 in the professional masters program, Benjamin Bagby travels widely in 2018 to teach other practical workshops for young professionals:

Milano, Scuola Civica di Musica (Milano, Italy) 29-31 January
The troubadours of the Milano manuscript R71 sup. (late 13th century)

Folkwang Universität der Künste (Essen-Werden, Germany) April-June
Benjamin will join the faculty of this renowned masters program for liturgical chant performance and medieval music, specializing this year in music from Notre Dame of Paris. The dates of his courses: 13-14 April, 18-20 May, 28-30 May and 15-17 June. More information

Schola Cantorum Basiliensis (Basel, Switzerland) 25-26 May

7th International Course on Medieval Music Performance (Besalú, Spain) .
Music relating to the idea of the Crusades, especially in the 12th and early 13th centuries.

Amherst Early Music Festival (Connecticut College, New London CT) 15-21 July
An intensive course on the Roman de Fauvel (14th century)
July 21, 2018, 1 pm "Roman de Fauvel project" (student performance)

Burg Fürsteneck, Germany (31 August to 02 September
Fortbildung zur Musik des Mittelalters / Roman de Fauvel (guest instructor)

More news