The 2nd International Conference on Jewish Liturgical Music
The Jewish music scholar Judit Frigyesi has aptly summarised the complexity of music’s role in Jewish religious worship as follows: ‘The Jewish service could be described as a large-scale musical piece, which is structured through the alternation of musical/performing styles… In the course of the service, transition from one musical style to another often has an almost dramatic effect as, for instance, when speech-like recitation is followed by highly ornamental and elaborate melodic improvisation’. (‘Orality as Religious Ideal’, Yuval vol 7: Studies in honour of Israel Adler, 2002)
This international conference offers an opportunity to explore in depth, within an academic forum, the complexity of the music of Jewish prayer in all its cultural manifestations. The wide-ranging scope encompasses themes including Hebrew psalmody, cantillation, Jewish modes and melodies, piyyutim, missinai tunes, the transmission of oral traditions, and synagogue composition, both cantorial and choral in areas where Jewish communities have flourished across the globe and throughout the centuries. Topics may also focus on current trends and issues such as cultural sustainability, the interfaces between liturgy, music and architecture/space, and with the musics of Christian, Muslim and other societies.
Proposals for 20-minute papers with 10 minutes for discussion (which may include relevant musical presentations) as well as for round table panel sessions and lecture-recitals of 60 or 90 mins are invited. Papers that make use of original archival sources, or that reinterpret known sources, will be particularly welcome, though all relevant areas and modes of investigation will be considered.