Junta de Andalucía. Consejería de Cultura. Junta de Andalucía Consejería de Cultura
Centro de Documentación Musical de Andalucía
Directorio Institucional

Música medieval: tradición, investigación, interpretación

Javier Lara

Medieval Music: Tradition, Investigation, and Interpretation


It is much easier to speak of medieval music than to interpret or reinterpret it. All of us who have confronted this sort of music appreciate how complex a task it is to present it to the listener so that it seems attractive and interesting.
In trying to connect with this music we must always consider the tradition that lies behind it. But to do that, we must investigate, learn what theoreticians of different periods have said and approach the manuscripts to try to read in them the mentality of those who went before us. The closer they are to us, the more objective are those theoreticians’ treatises (when they exist at all), although we know that they exaggerated a bit and that they were not always in agreement with one another. We must know how to “read between the lines” and discover the mentality reflected in such writings. Then again we have the musical scores and must know how to interpret those signs which don’t always – not to say almost never – seem familiar to us. These two missions are difficult to reconcile and put into practice, but this is the only possible course.
Nonetheless we must honestly confess that perfection does not exist. If we wait for everything to be researched and put in its place, we will never be able to face a musical score and draw convincing sound out of it. Sometimes it is necessary to experiment so as to change one’s method or improve the phrasing, the timing, the timbre, etc.
We cannot force the listener to perform an act of faith as respects what he is hearing; rather, we must offer him a series of deductions based on available facts with the maximum intellectual honesty possible and give him the opportunity to make his own choices. According to the information that we provide, the listener will have to form his own criteria and decide for himself between various options. When manuscripts don’t provide all the facts to substantiate one interpretation we should be honest and not deceive our audience. We must try to convince only when the facts permit. As musicians we must try to capture the mentality and will of the composer so as to better “recreate” his music. Of course, always in relative terms.

Idioma: spa

Páginas: 31 - 39

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