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Young Choristers, 650–1700
  • Publisher: Boydell & Brewer
  • Online publication date: September 2012
  • Print publication year: 2008
  • Online ISBN: 9781846156830
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Book description

Young singers played a central role in a variety of religious institutional settings: urban cathedrals, collegiate churches, monasteries, guilds, and confraternities. The training of singers for performance in religious services was so crucial as to shape the very structures of ecclesiastical institutions, which developed to meet the need for educating their youngest members; while the development of musical repertories and styles directly reflected the ubiquitous participation of children's voices in both chant and polyphony. Once choristers' voices had broken, they often pursued more advanced studies either through an apprenticeship system or at university, frequently with the help of the institutions to which they belonged. This volume provides the first wide-ranging book-length treatment of the subject, and will be of interest to music historians - indeed, all historians - who wish to understand the role of the young in sacred musical culture before 1700. SUSAN BOYNTON is Associate Professor of Historical Musicology at Columbia University; ERIC RICE is Assistant Professor of Music at the University of Connecticut at Storrs. CONTRIBUTORS: SUSAN BOYNTON, SANDRINE DUMONT, JOSEPH DYER, JANE FLYNN, ANDREW KIRKMAN, NOEL O'REGAN, ALEJANDRO PLANCHART, RICHARD RASTALL, COLLEEN REARDON, ERIC RICE, JUAN RUIZ JIMENEZ, ANNE BAGNALL YARDLEY.


This is one of those books which pours fascinating light on an interesting subject that has hitherto been inadequately researched. This book has a wealth of information and will lead readers into all sorts of directions.'

Source: Early Music Review

[I]t brings together work of some of the best institutional music historians of the medieval and early modern periods, and offers a rich sampling of their research and writing. [...] offers a valuable introduction to the study of music and musical training in ecclesiastical institutions.'

Source: Plainsong and Medieval Music

All in all, if one has an interest in early choral music and the role child musicians played in the performance of this music, one can hardly do better than to spend a few enjoyable hours reading these thoughtful, well-researched essays.'

Source: Early Music

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