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Melisma

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Melisma

Postby Stargzer » Mon Mar 12, 2007 11:46 pm

I ran across Melisma on Wikipedia:

In music, melisma (commonly known as vocal runs or simply runs) is the technique of changing the note (pitch) of a syllable of text while it is being sung. Music sung in this style is referred to as melismatic, as opposed to syllabic, where each syllable of text is matched to a single note. Music of the ancient cultures used melismatic techniques to achieve a hypnotic trance in the listener, useful for early mystical initiation rites (Eleusinian Mysteries) and religious worship. This quality is still found in much Jewish, Hindu and Muslim religious music today. In western music, the term most commonly refers to Gregorian Chant, but may be used to describe music of any genre, including baroque singing and later gospel. Within Jewish liturgical tradition melisma is still commonly used in the chanting of Torah, readings from the Prophets, and in the body of the service itself. For an examination of the evolution of this tradition, see Idelsohn. ...

... The French Carol tune "Gloria" arranged by Edward Shippen Barnes in 1937, to which the hymn Angels We Have Heard On High is usually sung, contains one of the most melismatic sequences in popular Christian hymn music, on the "o" of the word "Gloria". Moreover, the choral tune "For Unto Us a Child is Born" from Handel's Messiah (Part I, No. 12) contains impressive examples of melisma. ...
Regards//Larry

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Postby Slava » Mon Nov 08, 2010 12:42 am

How can we use this in the real world?

"Ah, dahlink, you look glorious today. Quite simply melismatic, I do say."

The lines of the latest sports car are like a melisma, flowing in and out of each other.

Anyone care to come up with more?
Life is like playing chess with chessmen who each have thoughts and feelings and motives of their own.
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Postby Perry » Mon Nov 08, 2010 7:05 am

How about, "Let's have less melisma and more singing."?
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Postby Slava » Mon Nov 08, 2010 8:15 am

I'll go for that one, if the singing is good, that is. I'll take some nice melisma over a miasma of noise masquerading as song any day.
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Postby LukeJavan8 » Wed Nov 10, 2010 5:54 pm

The Roman Church lost much when it abandoned
its Gregorian Chant.
-----please, draw me a sheep-----
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