Welcome to the World of Byzantine Music
The Byzantine Music
Byzantine music is the type of music being used in ecclesiastical services of Christian Greek Orthodox church. The music is written in symbolic characters and each note is depended on the previous note. The rhythms are categorized in two-beat, three-beat and four-beat rhythms as well as slower and faster rhythms. Byzantine music is chanted acapella and when accompanied by a second or more voices to “keep” the base note of a melody( isokratima, in Greek) produces an aesthetic result.
Scales & Modes
The music scales that are used in the Byzantine music fall into three categories, diatonic scale, chromatic scale, and harmonic scale. Octaves are divided in 72 cents. Byzantine music has eight modes. The modes are: First, Second, Third, Fourth, Plagal of First, Plagal of Second, Heavy, and Plagal of Fourth.
Composers & CantorsSome famous Byzantine music composers are: Saint Damaskinos who is considered the father of Byzantine music, Petros Lampadarios, Redestinos, Hatziathansiou. A couple of notorious Byzantine music cantors, who chanted at the Greek Patriarchate in Constantinople, were Stanitsas and Priggos.
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