Interpreting the early Ottoman music repertiore on the oud and nay as recorded in the Ali Ufki and Demetrius Cantemir collections.
Degree GrantorUniversity of Canterbury
Degree NameDoctor of Musical Arts
In order to inform my own performance on the Middle Eastern lute, the oud, and the flute, the nay, this study aims to discover how court music played in Constantinople4 in the sixteenth century, may have sounded. Is it possible to recreate an authentic performance practice for this repertoire? If this is an achievable goal, how should one approach such a task? Due to the continuity of the maqam music traditions that are in existence today, we do not have to totally recreate an entirely lost and forgotten art. The first thing to undertake is the search for any contemporary musical styles that are linked to the music discussed here. The connections to early Ottoman art music can be found in the current living musical traditions of Persian, East Arabic and Turkish maqam music. These genres will therefore, be thoroughly investigated in order to draw out any stylistic traits of performance practice that are related to early Ottoman music. This study also attempts to bring together aspects contained in the contemporary Turkish, Iranian and Eastern Arabic art music traditions, in order to reassemble aspects of these three modern genres and to create a style of performance practice that unites these three parts into a musical whole. This study is limited to maqam music, that is, the classical art music of the Middle East and Central Asia. The area of maqam music is enormous, and is one of the world’s longest, continuous musical traditions. This study is limited to the Eastern maqam music that is from the fifteenth to sixteenth centuries. The reason for the focus on this period is due to it being a particularly pivotal era in the evolution of the maqam music from this period is the ancestor of today’s Turkish, Arabic and Persian art music. There has been reasonably thorough scholarly attention paid to the Medieval Islamic period and the modern period (nineteenth to twenty-first centuries). Also, Walter Feldman and Eugenia Popescu Judetz have focussed on the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, and have covered these periods extensively. This study aims to extend the research on the maqam in the fifteenth to sixteenth centuries.