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In October 2012, ICONEA Director Richard Dumbrill visited Lebanon, initially to attend a conference in Beirut on Rituals in the Ancient Levant. The conference was cancelled following a bombing in the metropolis. Dumbrill seeked help from CERMAA/FOREDOFICO to produce a documentary film on the subject he had intended to give at the National Museum. The documentary, funded by the Friends of the National Museum and CERMAA/FOREDOFICO is about the research work Dumbrill has undertaken for the past 25 years on the translation of the oldest known musical text, written in the Hurrian language, dating from about 1400 years BC, and found at Ugarit in North East Syria in the 1950s. The documentary was shot by Paul Mattar, Founding member of FOREDOFICO, in a renowned archaeological site, and at the headquarters of CERMAA, in the suburbs of Beirut.
Rosy Azar Beyhom and Amine Beyhom, CERMAA founding members contributed to the Orientalisation of Dumbrill’s original rendition of the Hurrian material. The song was recorded at the CALA recording studios, a subdivision of FOREDOFICO specialised in archival recordings. Saad SAAB, President of FOREDOFICO made improvisastions on the Ꜥūd on the theme of the original music. The singing of the melody, and the acting on site was entrusted to a young and promising Lebanese singer, Lara Jokhadar Al-Aro. There, Lara played the role of a young woman afflicted with the curse of being childless, and sang her sorrow to the moon goddess NIKKAL so that she may bear child.
Lara Jokhadar al-Aro
The original score for the Hurrian H.6. song has been published in Richard Dumbrill’s article for NEMO N°1 :
Dumbrill, Richard : “Modus Vivendi,” Near Eastern Musicology Online11 |2012-11| p. 89–116.
CERMAA welcomed recently Jean During, a senior researcher at CNRS – France. Jean During led three interviews on June 03 2012 with renowned Lebanese music teachers and musicians Imane Homsy (qanun), Joseph Loueizeh (teacher of singing and numerous other activities – member of CERMAA and founding member of FOREDOFICO) and Saad Saab (`ud teacher and performer – President of FOREDOFICO and member of CERMAA). He was accompanied by Amine Beyhom for CERMAA.
The subject of the interviews was “Music Aesthetics”.
Jean During is also a member of the Academic Board of NEMO-Online, the Musicological Journal co-founded by CERMAA, ICONEA (British Museum and University of London) and PLM (Université de la Sorbonne – France).
CERMAA co-organises in Brest (Brittany – France) in November 2011 a Conference on “Modality – A Bridge Between East and West” with DROM. Amine Beyhom will read a pre-Conference paper on General Modality, while Erik Marchand will explain, on this occasion, the Modal aspects of Brittany Music.
Amine Beyhom will also read a paper on the use of fretted and unfretted string instruments.