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Lai de Bisclaveret

Lai de Bisclaveret
6 Hoskin Avenue, Trinity College Chapel
Time: Aug 13th, 7:00 pm End: Aug 13th, 8:00 pm
Interest Categories: Women/Gender, Women & Gender Studies (FAS), Music, Faculty of , Medieval Studies (FAS), Historical Studies (UTM), Historical and Cultural Studies (UTSC), French and Linguistics (UTSC), French (FAS), Drama, Theatre, Performance Studies (FAS)
Performance by Pneuma Ensemble

The Jackman Humanities Institute Program for the Arts is pleased to present Narrative Performances

medieval wolf

Lai de Bisclaveret

Performed by Pneuma Ensemble

Gaven Dianda: Gittern, Citole, Harp, Percussion
Eleanor Verrette: Vielle, Percussion
Tricia Postle: Voice, Lyre

Pneuma Ensemble (from the Greek word πνευ?μα, "breath," "spirit," or "soul") formed in late 2013 when three Toronto musicians (Tricia Postle, Eleanor Verrette, Gaven Dianda) from the early music scene decided to explore their shared interest in medieval monophony. High points for the Ensemble thus far include a residency at the Banff Centre for the Arts, touring with the PLS in the UK, and performing at venues such as the Great Hall of Durham Castle, a 14th century pilgrim's hostel in Cataluna, and the Mostly Medieval Theatre Festival at Kalamazoo. Pneuma is delighted to present their "Lai de Bisclaveret," and "Floire et Blancaflor" to the Société Rencesvals.  

For more information, visit www.pneumaensemble.com, or like/follow us on Facebook.

Pneuma instruments


In “Lai de Bisclaveret” Pneuma Ensemble presents Marie de France’s classic anglo-norman werewolf tale, with its shifting boundries between beasts and humans, predators and prey. It is interesting that “werewolf” appears as a term for “outlaw” in some legal codes of Marie's time, such as the Leges Edwardi Confessoris. Marie’s work was “prized and held dear by counts, barons, and knights” (likely in the English court of Henry II and Eleanor of Aquitaine) but speaks to our own time as well.

The complete Bisclaveret text survives only in Harley 978, a literary, musical and medical miscellany most famous for the tune "Sumer is Icumen In." We include pieces from Harley such as "Sumer," the less-known "Samson Dux Fortissime," and an anonymous dance in the music of Bisclaveret. From other sources, "Mon Corage M'es Chanjatz" by the troubadour Albertet, and Richart de Berbezil's series of beast allegories "Atressi com l'Olifanz," along with dance tunes from the Robertsbridge Codex and MS. Douce 139.

This performance is the first part of a three-part event titled Narrative Performances.  The second a third parts will take place on Tuesday 14 August 2018.  At 7:00 p.m. there will be a performance by Antoni Rossell, Professor of Romance Philology, Universidad Autònoma de Barcelona of Extracts from the Cantar de Mio Cid in the Trinity College Chapel. And at 8:30 p.m. there will be a panel discussion on Narrative Performance in Seeley Hall, Trinity College.  For more information about these events, please see https://www.humanities.utoronto.ca/event_details/id=3702


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