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Music of Medieval Spain

The coexistence of Arabic, European, and Sephardic traditions

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Dates Fri, Mar 22 – Sun, Mar 24, 2024

Venue Folger Theatre

Duration 1 hour 45 minutes, with intermission

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The 13th-century Castilian court under King Alfonso the Wise was the center of a remarkable – and often harmonious – coexistence of Christian, Islamic, and Jewish peoples in an era known as Spain’s “convivencia” (“coexistence”). His court patronized musicians, artists, doctors, lawyers, and scholars from all three cultures.

Music from each tradition is brought together in a program that shares Sephardic songs, Arab Andalusian music, and songs from the Cantigas de Santa Maria, one of the most important historical sources of medieval music, compiled by King Alfonso.

Song texts and illuminations from the Cantigas depicting multicultural musical ensembles will be projected during the performance, bringing this rich history to life in a multimedia experience.

With voices, plucked and bowed Arabic and European instruments, winds, and percussion.