Saturday 18 May 2024

Suzanne Haïk-Vantoura - a little history

Forty-three years ago, 1981, the English translation of The Music of the Bible Revealed by Suzanne Haïk-Vantoura was published. What sort of impact has it had? The book is available to read online from the link.

I recall in the Oxford conference on the Psalms (2010) where I was introduced to this work, that there was considerable dialogue over the control to be exercised by Fondation Roi David over the use of the deciphering key. 

The website of Fondation Roi David, via, has been partially restored. The link brings up a single image with some links superimposed. Try them out. This is new information for me. The first is a conversation with SHV largely about the prose reconstruction. It's very clear. Those of you who are on Facebook can join the group

Note below the first publication in 1976. The recordings happened over a 12 year period, 1976-87, not quite as long as I have spent familiarizing myself with the musical framework, 2010-24. A curious word from her introduction to her book is this: A tradition is not established in just a few generations. She continued her work at least until 1995-6. I don't have any further information at this time.

History of the various performances published under the banner of Fondation Roi David

Friday 10 May 2024

Sample chapter of a book?

This book may not be written by me. But it's there for anyone to do it if you have the impulse. I may be in a place to write it, but I'm in no hurry and I may not last long enough. The book I'm thinking of is on the impact of the idea of a deciphering key for the te'amim. Think the Mind of the Maker and communicating with ancient designers of musical notation. Creator to creator -- Performance to performance -- Energy to energy -- i.e. trinity and incarnation. You could even provide probabilities. Why did those engineers put a golden CD in the Voyager?

Oh well, this is a blog -- not a book. But there is a lot of data in it. My tags are fair but limited, but the search blog is comprehensive -- if a little too much at times.

Suzanne Haïk-Vantoura and I are not entirely in agreement about the interpretation and resolution of ornaments. She, for instance, allows her musical judgment to let an ornament just be a dip or a rise on a single note. Maybe. She also (sometimes) allows for placement of the accent to make a difference. Also maybe. Some aspects of design are more highly prone to copying error than others.

Here's her appendix note on Lamentations 1:1.

From The Music of the Bible Revealed

She and I disagree here. Her musical intuitions on a note by note basis are not programmable, at least by me.

I programmed my interpretation of the Unicode so my e-brain is not always fully attuned to the nuances of placement in a sign or identity of shape in the 2 cases where signs are the same above and below the text. This may be an error in my thinking and programming. Unicode, (see the coding here) even though deficient in managing little short strokes like silluq, has been more careful in distinguishing Geresh from Geresh Muqdam and Pashta from Qadma than I have been in my programming.

The above is slightly unreadable and somewhat out of its context - i.e. lacking in explanation. But this brief chapter is totally comprehensible - please let me know if you disagree. Especially if you would like to collaborate on a book. Anyway, at the time of pushing the publish button, I am still quite alive -- if more silent than usual.