As the early Church moved from the ground of its Semitic origins to the wider world of Greek culture, it had to negotiate the tensions between the two worlds, the Hebraic and the Hellenic. “What has Athens to do with Jerusalem?” Tertullian’s famous question captured this tension. In the realm of music and liturgy we could ask an analogous question: “What has Orpheus to do with David?” With Orpheus and David representing the quintessence of the Greek and Jewish musical traditions.
In this lecture, Dr. Aquila discusses the relation of music and liturgy in the history of the Catholic Church with special attention to four periods of tension between them each in part informed by elements of the Orpheus-Davidic understanding of music. The presentation will include musical examples of plainchant and polyphony.
Presented by the Serra Club of Houston, the Notre Dame Club of Houston, and the University of St. Thomas.
Speaker(s): Dr. Dominic Aquila
Date: December 15, 2010
Location: Cullen Hall
Length: 80 mins