Magazine article New Internationalist

Jerusalem: The City of Two Peaces

Magazine article New Internationalist

Jerusalem: The City of Two Peaces

Article excerpt

Jerusalem: the City of Two Peaces

by Jordi Savall Alia Vox AVSA 9863 2CD and book + download)

There is something so monumentally ambitious about Jordi Savall's massive recording that you can only be awe-struck. Two CDs, a 400-page lavishly illustrated book with texts and essays on Jerusalem - the city and the music - in six languages, all produced in the service of peace.

One of the world's early music experts, Savall uses the best soloists and ensembles. The soprano Montserrat Figüeras, the group Hespèrion XXI and the singers of the Capella Reial de Catalunya will be familiar to any early-music lover; less so the assembled musicians from Europe and the Middle East.

The idea of the title starts in etymology. The word 'Jerusalem' contains the Arabic and Hebrew words for 'peace' and Savall is looking to both spiritual and earthly concord. Beginning with the sound of shofars (the ram's horns traditionally used in synagogues) and anfirs, the long-stemmed medieval Arabic trumpets, Savall's Jerusalem tells in musical terms the city's 3,000 year history. …

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