Between the Sacred and the Profane
for string quartet
Between the Sacred and the Profane for string quartet has two movements which are not to be played separately. The two parts are based on rhythmic and melodic materials which draw upon sources of Jewish liturgical music and songs of various communities of the people of Israel. The first movement is based on a limited number of biblical cantillations combining two versions: the Moroccan-Casablanca version and the Spanish-Jerusalem one. It is recitative, prayer-like in character and embodies both the prayers of the individual and of the congregation. It is freely constructed and its language is chromatic and expressive. The second movement is based, in the main, on three wedding songs of the Jewish community of Tetuan in Spanish Morocco which is renowned for the beauty and wealth of its songs. The songs were picked out from the anthology "The Cycle of Life", edited by Dr. Shoshana Weich-Shahak. These Ladino songs influenced by Spanish melos and rhythm yet they retain the taste of biblical cantillations. The work was commissioned by the Israel Music Heritage Project. Published with assistance of the Esther and Karel Salmon Fund.