Leaping off the page and into the air: Many types of poetry have a musical component that is invisible on the page but intended to be part of the performance of the poem. This occurs in ancient cultures: epic Greek poetry and the Book of Psalms, for example. There are many examples from the medieval and early modern periods as well.
This symposium explores the aural, sung aspects of poetry through the research of scholars who work with the invisible musical sounds of poetry from ancient Greece, medieval France, Crusade songs of the middle ages, colonial British America, and the English Restoration of the 1600s. Our speakers present their active research on these genres, and a performance of some of the pieces will be offered in a public concert. This symposium is linked to the Spring 2019 music history course “Invisible Music” (MUHST 497), in which students will work on reconstructing music for similar poetry.