Byzantine Music - 78 RPM Orfeon-Odeon (1914-1926) (Iakovos Nafpliotis Compiling)

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Byzantine Music - 78 RPM Orfeon-Odeon (1914-1926) (Iakovos Nafpliotis Compiling)

Byzantine Music - 78 RPM Orfeon-Odeon (1914-1926) (Iakovos Nafpliotis Compiling)
2008 | MP3 CBR 320 kbps | 101 Tracks | ~868 Mb | 5CD
Genre : Oldies & Religious Music | Kalan Music


Byzantine Music / Preface:

These new CDs are not being introduced as a simple addition to the consumer market, as they were produced with the consciousness that authentic Byzantine melody is not music intended for popular consumption, nor can it become an object of commercialization. On the contrary, Byzantine music belongs to the realm of transcendence. It is word [logos] in musical form, the word of revelation and disclosure of truth and the experience of the Church that is not related to the provocation of the senses, emotion, pleasure, or delight. The beauty, therefore, of Byzantine music does not have an aesthetic basis, but rather an ontological one, which imprints and defines this beauty in both an iconic and Eucharistic fashion in the Divine Services.

In this way, Byzantine music with its archetypal and beauty-loving [philokalic] models is the witness of the world’s transfiguration towards the image of Christ and the petition of all creation to the Uncreated One, which in return gives to humanity imperishability, eternity, and divine beauty. Further, Byzantine music is the unceasing song of Angels, and humanity’s expectation of resurrection and the life of the age to come. Given these premises, Byzantine music can exist and be understood only in the context of the Holy Services of the Church.

In this case, these new CDs reflect specific scholarly proposals that may be studied further for the experiential and ecumenical nature of the antiphonal and choral liturgical melody, with the conviction that it will return to its plain and authentic formulations.

In particular, these CDs present to the music-loving public the chanting tradition of the Holy and Great Church of Christ of Constantinople, the center of the Orthodox Church, to which all other local Orthodox churches throughout the world follow in stride and conform to. From this position, we express our deepest respect and gratitude to His All Holiness the Ecumenical Patriarch Bartholomew for his assistance and paternal love during the implementation of our scholarly research over the past year 2007-2008 at the Phanar so that the above mentioned work might be brought to fruition, a work that is offered and dedicated to the achievement of the goals set by the Association of Friends of Music in Pera, Constantinople.

The promotion of scientific research and the utilization of the audio material of the phonographic records that were recorded by the Protopsaltis of the Great Church, Iakovos Nafpliotis, was realized with the contribution of the European programs INTERREG and EPEAEK, programs actualized at the Patriarchal Institute for Patristic Studies of Thessaloniki [1997–2000] under the supervision of the author. The costs of the production were kindly covered by the entrepreneur Nikolaos E. Manos. The following people also contributed to this project: Miltiadis Pappas, 1st Domestikos of the Great Church and Dr of Historical Musicology, Stelios Berberis, Assistant of Patriarchal Choir, and Georgios Patronas, Musico-pedagogue, Doctoral Candidate of the Department of Music Science and Art of the University of Macedonia.
Antonios E. Alygizakis
Archon Hymnodos of the Holy Great Church of Chrıst
Unıversıty Professor

Byzantine Music / Epilogue:

The Great Church of Constantinople is the center of Orthodoxy, around which a mighty cultural center was established. In this way, the Church and the State established together a common ecumenical and supranational institution of friendship and cooperation in the entire duration of the Byzantine period.

Within this framework, the Byzantine musical culture was developed, a culture that spread throughout the Mediterranean basin, the Balkans and the West.

The hyphos of the Great Church is not an aesthetic category, but an ontological one, determined by the Eucharistic experience, which is a communion of love, revelation of the truths of the world, the relationship of the created and the uncreated and the coming of the end of days.

The music of the Great Church and the entire Orthodox world serves ecumenical and existential realities and enshrines the entire mystery and life of those in communion with Christ. Its beauty, therefore, and its hyphos is one of thanksgiving and its mission is to bring us the knowledge of the new world of grace.

The Patriarchal chanting hyphos is assimilated after long and persistent training at the Patriarchal musical choirs. The Protopsaltis is the central personality who attunes to and directs the entire ecclesiastical typikon.

The Protopsaltis Iakovos Nafpliotis completes an era in the Patriarchal chanting tradition. His beautiful voice and many years of service contributed to the systematization of the method of interpretation during the second and third decades of the 20th century, that become a school. Then, he recorded a great series of Ecclesiastical hymns. These recordings constitue a monumental work and an international storehouse of invaluable cultural and scholarly value. Iakovos Nafpliotis left his mark on the subsequent training and bringing to light the work of chanters with his active work in the musical associations of Constantinople.
ANTONIOS E. ALYGIZAKIS

Byzantine Music - 78 RPM Orfeon-Odeon (1914-1926) (Iakovos Nafpliotis Compiling)


Byzantine Music is the eternal song of the East, inspired by the ancient hymns to Yahweh, the psalms of David, the spirit-bearing, new, resurrectional hymns of the Church, of the communion in the cup of eternal life, of the unwaning light, of the unaging eon; Byzantine Music is the Song of Songs, sung thousands of times from the gates and shrines of Zion, Damascus, and Antioch; the catacombs, martyria, and holy wells of Rome; the hermitages of the desert, the high vaults of the Hagia Sophia, the litanies of the Book of Ceremonies, of the Patriarchal Court and Palace, the all-night vigils of the Holy Mountain of Athos, the gathering of the multitudes for the vigils of Thessaloniki and the quadrophonal “alliteration” of the Slavic churches; all these represent expressions of Byzantine music.

Byzantine music is also the philokalic, monastic, and kalophonic psaltic melody of Angel-voiced melodists and masters of the Byzantine tradition: Romanos, Severus, John of Damascus, Xenon Koronis, Emmanuel Chrysafis, John Plousiadinos, Akakkios Chalkeopoulos, Theophanes Karykis, Joseph the Monk, Demetrius Damia, George Radestinos, Panagiotis Chrysafis, Germanos of Neon Patron, Balasios the Priest, Kosma Makedonas, Damian of Vatopedi, Petros Bereketis, and many others.

Further, Byzantine music is the Patriarchal hyphos [style] of the First Chanters [Protopsaltoi] and Second Chanters [Lampadarioi] of the Holy and Great Church of Christ in Constantinople. Among the most famous are: Panagiotis Chalatzoglu, John of Trabzon, Daniel, Peter the Peloponnesian, James, Peter the Byzantine, Emmanuel, Gregory, Constantine, John, Stephanos, Gregory Redestinos, and Nicholas Lampadarios. The righteous voices of our Athonite fathers and teachers Matthew of Vatopedi, Daniel of Docheiariou, and Joasaph of Dionysiou, also followed this hyphos.

Byzantine music, in the end, is the global melody of nations and peoples that interprets and brings forth values of universal scope, such as freedom, justice, and human rights. Byzantine music has been sung by different peoples, races, and languages: Greeks, Egyptians, Libyans, Thebans, Palestinians, Arabs, Phoenicians, and Syrians to name a few. They translated the music into both ancient and modern languages: such as Slavonic, Georgian, Arabic, Finnish, and English. It has been sung by old chanters, newer musicians, and Ottoman troubadours, each in their own manner.

Above all, however, Byzantine music is the mysatgogy of the thearchic and precious hymnody of the Angels. It is the authentic existential expression that exalts one to the immaterial archetypes of beauty and goodness and whose melodies come to the material world as a resonance of noetic propriety.

Undoubtedly, therefore, Byzantine music is itself the very testimony of life, death, and eternity, as well as the ecumenical destination of Church.

With these presuppositions the history of the Byzantine melody is intertwined with the liturgical experience, within which the art of composition [melurgy] is fashioned. The melurgist, that is the melodist and musician, is the ecclesiastical composer, whereas, melurgy signifies the process of setting to music the texts of the Psalter and of other early Christian poetical forms that came to be called troparia and that define the eight modes [tropoi] of melodic composition. Consequently, the syllabic models of the Psalms and troparia made up the initial content of Byzantine Music. Subsequently, the evolutionary forms of the sticheraric and hiermologic melodies were formulated. All of the above musical creations draw their names from their place in the typikon, which records in detail the structure of each church service.

In the end, Byzantine Music is one of the richest, independent, musical traditions. Its content is wholly ecclesiastical. Its internal elements, however, are associated with the artistic and philosophical perceptions of Greek antiquity, such as the tropic musical system, the choral parts of tragedy, the ontological considerations of beauty and of the world, which are realities that are liberated from corruption and death. For all of the above reasons, the multiple interest of scientific research in Byzantine Music is readily comprehensible.


The Ecumenical Patriarchate and the Great Church of Christ are identical and interwoven concepts that indicate that the Church of Constantinople is the Mother Church and “first throne” within the hierarchy of the Orthodox Church. Its authority is clearly spiritual and its identity is authentically Apostolic. In particular, every aspect of its function derives directly from the Eucharistic synaxis and the Church’s liturgical typikon, which is entirely unique throughout the world and axiomatic hyphos of the Great Church of Christ. The concepts, therefore, of the Ecumenical Patriarchate and the hyphos of the Holy and Great Church of Christ or Patriarchal hyphos are not natural or aesthetic categories, that is, they do not describe a physical or geographical dimensions, nor artistic or literary styles or rhythms. Rather, they are ontological categories which refer to ecumenical, historical, and existential realities, such as the relationship between created and uncreated, the Eucharistic transfiguration of the in abited world into the person of Christ and the world’s reference to eternity and the triune communion. Consequently, the chief aspect of the Patriarchal hyphos is the way in which the liturgical rites and particularly the holy Eucharist are experienced. This “way” bears no relation to the satisfaction of the senses or the submission of our emotions, but rather it is the revelation of the new world of grace, the experience of the Church and reflection of the expectation of the end times [eschata].

The dimension of this liturgical act is formulated with inspiration in the Patriarchate’s publication, “The Ecclesiastical Typikon according to the Hyphos of the Great Church of Christ.” Ultimately, then, the hyphos of the Great Church is the exemplary organization of all those elements which compose the holy services and liturgical assemblies and that comprise the experience and the catholicity of the Great Church of end times.

In this way the Patriarchal hyphos of the Great Church of Constantinople saturates an entire array of ecclesiastical activity with one powerful cultural core. This core shapes a variety of expressions and formulations of Christian teaching and art, such as architecture, liturgical theology, holy readings, word [both drawn and musical], the staged adornment of the ecclesiastical typikon, vestments, miniatures, ecclesiastical choirs, liturgical vessels, litanies, the kinesiology, lamp-lighting, the offering of incense, and many others.

The Great Church of Constantinople, according to the ancient tradition as expressed by St Romanos the Melodist, “is the ground upon which lays the throne of the Church.” The same position is formulated in the Book of Ceremonies, written by the emperor Constantine VII Porphyrogenitos. From the descriptions the majestic festal assemblies it is clear that the Byzantine state and Church had an ecumenical mission with stable supranational institutions of friendship and cooperation. The Great Church was the established epicenter of the brilliant, royal, festal celebrations, which obviously promoted a type of league of nations, a global novelty of Byzantine civilization.

Today, in the Phanar, the Ecumenical Patriarchate has the same goals and fulfills its mission, while at the same time safeguarding traditions of the Great Church in the most luminescent and venerable Patriarchal Cathedral of St. George in Constantinople. These institutions honor the entire international community and, especially, the Turkish Nation.

Indubitably, the Byzantine and post-Byzantine musical culture is born and shines forth from within the Great Church and the Byzantine palaces. This culture deeply influenced the musical traditions of the entire Mediterranean basin, both eastern and western. Key elements, however, are detected in the functional mechanisms of Byzantine, Ottoman and Turkish classic music.

The Patriarchal hyphos may be approached only after arduous preparation and training in the distinctive and unique artistry of the ecclesiastical melodies, which are selected for the liturgical needs of the Great Church. Certainly, the comprehensive study of and familiarization in the Patriarchal hyphos can be realized only after a lengthy period of apprenticeship at the choirs of the Patriarchal Cathedral and in the various ranks of the choristers: Canonarch, Assistant, 1st and 2nd Domestikos, Lampadarios, and finally, Protopsaltis [First Chanter]. The program of musical education is both prescribed and inviolable. Similarly, the accommodation of the member of the Patriarchal choir to this particular musical expression, which is not related to the personal peculiarities of one’s vocal ability, but rather to the sanctity and gravity of the ecclesiastical melodies. Given this, the Patriarchal hyphos is bound by specific stances of the body, movements, expressions of respect, colorations, rhythm, restrictions of the phonetic range of pitch, but also the strict observance the liturgical typikon. Among the most inviolable of rules of the Patriarchal psaltic hypos is the faithful assimilation to the ways of rendering the liturgical melodies as inherited from older teachers.

The Patriarchal hyphos, however, does not constitute an rigid reality, as is the case with the liturgical rubric of the West. In the East, with the Ecumenical Patriarchate as the focal point, the Orthodox experience shapes an intense cosmopolitan character from within the various local traditions. This phenomenon is found as early as the period of St Basil the Great [4th century], when this great Father of the Church spoke of one common tradition that had been established while simultaneously assigning its multi-nationalism and the regions in which the various tendencies would, before long, manifest themselves, something that is indicative of their integrity and vigor. These tendencies will in suit feed the various regional traditions which, as regards liturgical chanting, will become crystallized in the form of local idioms and particularities of the local typikon.

These local liturgical are formulated in a similar manner and are projected in a greater, yet specific and official rite of a greater area. In this way, the typikon is presented as a codification and certification of the good order of the Church. Consequently, the liturgical rites constitute an indication of the catholicity of the Church and are nothing more than variants or idioms of the Church’s single tradition. Such variations are the Byzantine, the Antiochian and the Alexandrine liturgical rites. Their mutual and reciprocal influence upon one another as well as internal motivations of the life of the Church created the traditions of the cathedral and monastic rites. It is evident that these forms closely follow the development of liturgical music.

The Sung Office, with its elaborate system of psalmody consisting of 68 antiphons accompanied by a great number of refrains, is the great privilege of the Great Church of Constantinople. On the other hand, the Monastic Rite alternatively divides the 150 Psalms into twenty kathismata and sixty stanzas. Here, chanting is limited to a small number of psalms, the rest being read. The effects of these two different systems on liturgical tradition were decisive, despite the fact that the Monastic Rite has taken the place of the Sung Office, which, in turn, became more oriented to song than the Sung Office.

It is easy for one to observe how the chanting tradition of the Great Church became fixed, since this tradition influenced the entire Orthodox East. The specific characteristics of the liturgical melody in Constantinople were finalized with the advent of notation, which receives a local flavor from the acclaimed composers of the City, grafting even the Jerusalemite liturgical practice. The general reception of the Constantinopolitan chanting system and its particular idioms that were crystalized from the time of the Master John Koukouzelis [12th century], as compared to the other local traditions of the Holy Mountain of Athos, Thessaloniki, Thessaly, Crete, and Cyprus, is a tangible reality that is further certified by the late-Byzantine manuscript tradition and even that of the Ottoman period.

However, in the 18th and 19th centuries the chanting style of Constantinople develops its own exclusive traits, which relate to all of the music of the feast days of the Church. During the same time period, the term “hypos” also appeared, a term that follows the titles of the collections of the Eirmologion, the Anastasimatarion, the Doxastarion etc. Evidently, the same title is entered in the Patriarchal edition of the Typikon edited by Constantine Protopsaltis. This special trait of chanting, which was to become in later years as the Patriarchal hypos, constitutes the exclusive technique of the Protopsaltes [First Chanters] of the Great Church of Constantinople, a technique respected throughout all the local Orthodox Churches.

In conclusion, the hypos of the Great Church is a broad ecclesiological concept that projects the meaning of liturgical and Eucharist experience and the eschatological perspective of the Church. The epithet, “Great,” of the primatial Church of Constantinople emphatically interprets the icon of the Great Church of the end times and the recapitulation of the entire world in the person of the incarnate Word. Consequently, the hypos of the Great Church is one of Eucharistic and doxological; it is the Thrice-holy hymn sung to the life-giving Trinity that is simultaneously offered by Angels and humans at the Divine Liturgy and that admonishes the faithful to leave aside all worldly concerns in order to receive the King of all.


"]Iakovos Nafpliotis, endowed with rich vocal talent and a deep knowledge of the ancient Patriarchal hyphos, was a watershed in ecclesiastical music, by creating a special school of interpretation that has been disseminated to the entire Orthodox Church. This, on the one hand, is due to Iakovos’ long-lasting and successful tenure at the Patriarchal Cathedral, and, on the other hand, to his coordinated efforts to codify the old musical practice, many of which he wisely recorded on a phonograph with the encouragement of the Patriarch. This monumental work constitutes an important deposit on a global scale of great scholarly and cultural value.

Iakovos Nafpliotis, whose family came from the Island of Naxos, was born in 1864. At a young age, he went to Constantinople and became a student at the Great School of the Nation. He was a descendant of a large and old family of Naxos and of Santorini, dating back to the 13th century, that had both Byzantine and Venetian roots. During the Ottoman period and after the establishment of the Hellenic State, his predecessors and relatives attained many high political and ecclesiastical offices of the local society. His father served for an extended period of time as Protopsaltes of the Metropolitan Cathedral of Naxos but subsequently returned to the Imperial City. Iakovos, at a young age, served as a canonarch at the Holy Church of the Savior, Galata, from where Patriarch Joachim transferred him to the Patriarchal Cathedral. Thus an early age he began his musical activities, studying and simultaneously serving the choirs of the authentic chanting stands, the Patriarchal choirs, his teachers being his predecessors, the protopsaltes, lambadarioi, and domestikous. Thereby, he served for sixty consecutive years, having covered all the ranks of the Patriarchal;

Two of his predecessors – teachers contributed mainly to the shaping of the musical personality of Iakovos, the Lampadarios Nikolaos and the Protopsaltis Georgios Violakis.

His first teacher taught him the older selections of music and oriented Iakovos solidly towards the sophisticated artistry of the slight nuances and interpretations of the Patriarchal hypos. This teaching was completed after many years of systemic practice at the Patriarchal services. Nikolaos the Lampadarios was the last person to use the musical script of Peter the Peloponnesian. Conversely, Iakovos chanted the same music using the new notation. In this way, he understood more completely interpretations of Nikolaos, who, as all the Patriarchal chanters, enriched his music with calculated analyses, without distancing himself from the classical line of musical formulae and the general morphological icon of composition. This achievement of analyzing the music in such a fashion was never written analytically, but was meticulously memorized, so that it would not be corrupted with excesses, something that the Patriarchal typikon never permitted. At this point, we can see the true strand of the approach of the Patriarchal musical tradition. From this point of view, Iakovos’ service at the Patriarchal chanter’s stands was especially successful, exemplary, and fruitful.

Iakovos’ second teacher, Georgios Violakis, inspired in his pupil the love and respect for the simple lines of the holy hymnody. He initiated Iakovos in the systematic study and research of ecclesiastical and secular music. Thanks to the cosmopolitan environment of Constantinople, these subjects were highly developed due to the especially high educational and cultural standard of the City. In particular, as first Domestikos, with the help of the Protopsaltis, Iakovos contributed greatly to the operation and development of the Ecclesiastical Music Association. He participated in the administrative, artistic and scholarly activities of this important cultural institution of Constantinople, which had its headquarters at the Patriarchate. In this period, one of the most important works of Iakovos was his paper read during the activities of the Association and the publication of manuscript of the theoretical tract written Panagiotis Chatzaoglu, the Protopsaltis of the Great Church himself. This publication also included extensive notes by Iakovos. The comparative research of Chatzaoglu, as well as the methodological systems of Arabo-persian and Ecclesiastical music, and the prefatory remarks of Iakovos are among the most important scholarly musicological material from this period. In 1899, Iakovos, as the first Domestikos, along with the second Domestikos, K. Klabbas, undertook the publication of the Doxastarion of the Protopsaltis G. Violakis.

Iakovos also systematically occupied himself with musical education, a work which was both rich and complex. He taught first at the School of the Ecclesiastical Music Association and after that in different schools: the theological school of Halki, the Great School of the Nation, the Elementary School of the Phanar, the Zappeion, the Iokakeimeio School for Girls and others. His program included a selection of school and ecclesiastical music, issues of the typikon, and musical theory. The fruit of his educational work was the musical book Phormix, which was published in 1894 at the Patriarchal printing house. It includes musical scripts of the author in the Byzantine musical notation, so that he could have used it as an aid in the schools in which he taught in Constantinople.

Even more important were the attempts of Iakovos to enhance the role of chanter through the establishment of a union. To this end, together with the Lampadarios Eustathios Viggopoulos and other distinguished musicians, he founded in 1819 the League of Chanters of Constantinople, which of course was put under the high protection of the Patriarchate. The Association was short lived, and lasted only until 1923. The constitutional provisions that were implemented for the foundation of this organization were used as a basis for a wider corporate and unionist activation of the branch that was rekindled in 1948 with the foundation of the Association of Friends of Ecclesiastical Music, which later became the Association of Friends of Music in Constantinople. Approved by the city officials on the 20th of March 1953, this organization continues to work as a recognized legal body today. The Association’s offerings and actions continued until the end of the 20th century, but it is constantly renewed based on the contemporary standards of our time. Due to a fortunate consequence, at the initiative of the Association Iakovos established and cared for 90 years ago, the greatly significant phonographs of the Protopsaltis Iakovos Nafpliotis are once again being released.

The Protopsaltis of the Great Church Iakovos Nafpliotis was duly honored for the work he offered. However, he was also criticised, as often happens to all people who hold important positions. In particular, two Patriarchal Pittakia, one by the Patriarch and the other by the Holy Synod, which express high regard and gratitude. The first such document was written on the occasion of the completion of fifty years of service of Iakovos. It was was given during the tenure of Patriarch Basil III in 1929. The second was given at the time of his death in 1939 during the tenure of Patriarch Benjamin, in honor of the “Accomplishments and distinguished service for sixty years at the holy Center.” It was given for all of his assiduous efforts to correctly observe the ancient hyphos, which he inherited from his predecessors and teachers upon his accession to rank of protopsaltis, and generally on account of his sanctified “and disciplined dedication to the Mother Church.” Indubitably, the perseverance of Iakovos to the tradition of Liturgical music and his refusal to create polyphonic choirs with many members or even with impressive monophonic interpretations was the reason for certain isolated criticisms against him, none of which had any basis. Related to these criticisms, are the articles of G. Pachticos in the periodical “Mousike,” which note a temporary suspension of Iakovos by Patriarch Meletios IV and Iakovos’ appearance at the Metropolitan Cathedral of Athens during a Vespers Service, towards the end of his life, at the invitation of Archbishop Chrysanthos, and old friend and admirer.

All in all, Iakovos Nafpliotis during his lengthy tenure in the Great Church systematically worked for the organization and application of the rules concerning the Patriarchal musical hyphos. Along with this, he also was interested in musical education, upgrading the ranks of the chanters and seeing to the promotion of their training through various cultural and scholarly activities of the musical organizations of Constantinople. Iakovos kept a rich library with many important old musical manuscripts, which were photographed by Simon Karas and his team in 1939.


The phonographic recordings of Iakovos Nafpliotis constitute a monumental work of special cultural and scholarly value. Their production became a reality under the Blumental Record and Talking Machine-Orfeon Record, by way of gramophone recordings, from 1914-1926. Afterwards, they were offered by Odeon on 78 speed records. The quality of the second production was noticeably improved and demonstrates the true characteristics of Iakovos’ voice. The future protopsaltis, Konstantinos Priggos, participated as a helper on many of the records under the Orfeon label. He also performs the Allelouarion of the Apostolic Reading.

The research into the discography of the above 78 speed records, related to the collection, recordings of contents, listing, digitalization of photographs and sound recordings, as well as the retouching of the sound and pictures lasted about two decades and was materialized within the framework of the scholarly endeavors of the author.

In particular, the recordings were collected and fifty eight [58] phonographic records were examined: fifty from Orfeon and eight from Odeon [along with two sound recordings]. Additionally, related recorded material that had been recorded in the US was also studied, evaluated, and utilized. In this way, from the above described original means [discs, film reels] the analogical sound material was transferred to digital medial [DAT] and then to CD. All in all, the recording underwent editing for the deletion of outside sound and the improvement of the sound signal by means of PC and was finally archived on CDs.

Based on the data cited on the records of Orfeon and the information collected from the recorded material that was not documented on the records with precision, an extensive alphabetical catalogue was created, indicating the incipits of the hymns, two hundred one [201] titles in total. In particular, the catalogue includes, first and foremost, the information of the labels, which pertain to the titles of the work: ORFEON RECORD [ORF], the incipits of the hymns and the full name of the Protopsaltis, and his assistant, whenever one participated in the recording. The four and five digit numbers engraved on the vinyl were also registered, as well as the five and three digit numbers of the labels.

From the above research the results are as follows:

1. the discs were released in four groups. The first three groups are designated by a four digit serial number insert, engraved on the vinyl, whereas the fourth group has a five digit engraved number. Specific to both categories, the first number shows the movement of the products from the factory in four groups corresponding to four time periods. 2. In the first, second and third period, the numbers correspond as described above, but in the fourth period the second digit is unified with the first. 3. Furthermore, the second number on the label documents the movement of the production of the factory in the four periods mentioned. It is observed, however, that the second number does not always follow the serial, as does the first number. 4. The numbers designate the recordings which are registered on the two labels of the two sides of each disc with the incipits of each hymn. 5. Each recording encompasses one or more hymns, when they are short in duration, or only one lengthy hymn, such as the Cherubic hymn, the Communion hymn, the Epi soi chairei Kecharitomeni, and others. These longer recordings proceed on the second side of the disc. Consequently, each recording makes up one side of the record. 6. Numerous recordings of similar content is included on the two sides of the records, in an absolute ascending order such as the above mentioned lengthy hymns, the double proemium Te hypermacho stratigo, To prostachthen mystikos, the kontakion of the Akathist Hymn, the antiphons, the Apostolic Readings, the allelouaria, the Gospel Readings and other recordings from the Divine Liturgy, the Small Paraklisis, and others. On the remaining discs the recordings do not follow the pattern of having the serial numbers correspond to their release from the factory, and as a consequence it is not possible to draw up a cohesive numerical list of records. 7. From the serial numbers of the recordings, it is apparent that the period of record production is traced back to the years 1914-1926.

According to an unpublished discographic study of Miltiades Pappas, which was brought to our attention, the information regarding the recording industry during the first quarter of the 20th century is meager. This information has to do mainly with the Blumental brothers, who were the owners of Orfeon Records during the years 1911-1912. Thus the recordings of Iakovos may have commenced at that time. They last, of course, until 1926 -because that is when the company closed its doors- and they continue at Odeon with the new technology that used a microphone and a preamplifier.

At this point, it must be mentioned that the relevant studies about the phonographic recordings, the recordings, and the factory copies of the Orfeon and Odeon discs have not yet been completed. This is due to the difficulties in gathering all pertinent material. Yet, Hugo Strötbaum has brought about relevant discographic research in a Christian Zwarg database, in which 46 phonographic recordings of hymns with 61 titles from Orfeon have been classified.

From the seven discs of Odeon that were collected [together with two recordings] six belong to the Protopsaltis Iakovos Nafpliotis and one to Constantinos Priggos. Particularly, the data of the labels which were documented in the alphabetic catalogue bear the inscription of the work of ODEON [ODE], the incipits of the hymns, and three numbers: one six digit number with an abbreviated citation at the beginning and the numbering of side one or two at the end. The second three digit number on the right side of the label is also inscribed on the vinyl. From the above, the following results are observed: 1. The engraved number that is written as the third number on the label shows, as is the case with Orfeon, the production movement of the factory. 2. The other numbers of the label designate the recordings and refer to the respective time frame that belong to the interwar years, that is, the late 1930s to the 1940s. 3. On the labels of the Odeon records Germany is noted as the place of production, whereas Greece is noted on the one record of Priggos. The last record was not included in this work; it was produced later as a separate recording.

To summarize, the phonographic records of Orfeon and Odeon collect an extensive repertoire of Byzantine music, which is considered to be one of the most important cultural productions which to a great degree still affects the studies in this form of ecclesiastical art. The collection, classification, editing, and the release of this phonographic material will contribute to a broader familiarity with the tradition of the Great Church.


The selection of the hymns, which Iakovos chose to record, demonstrates above all the educational characteristic of the work. That is, the most important forms of liturgical music were used. Thus, from the plain musical syllabic forms of the troparia - which are nonetheless characterized by a complex internal melodic unity within the framework of the variable mechanisms of the tropic system of the ecclesiastical music and the arrangement of the liturgical typikon - the following were used: dismissal hymns, kontakia, kathismata, kanones, magnific hymns to the virgin, exaspolitaria, antiphons, entrance hymns, verses, femes of hierarchs, etc. The rendition of these hymns demands a high level of theoretical knowledge and many years of chanting and and much experience with the rites of the Church. From the compound forms of ecclesiastical music, the structure of which represents an exceptionally large catalogue of developed melodies and formed designs, slow and slow-fast pieces of the musical repertoire were interpreted: versions of Psalm 140 [kekragaria], idiomelic doxastica, Blessed art Thou hymns, eothina, prosomia, lauds, prayers for the hierarch, Christ is risen, slow sticheraric hymns, dynamis, Cherubic hymns, Communion hymns, responses of the Liturgy, It is meet to praise thee, Allelouaria, “Hail, unwedded bride,” Alleluia, the Akathist, slow prokeimena, the epistle reading and others. The artistic planning of these pieces of music, because of the calophonic and melismatic qualities, indeed, the frequent changes of their systematic method and voice systems [diphonic, triphonic, tetraphonic, etc.] require a deep knowledge of musical theory, as well as a beautiful voice, experience and an expanded vocal range.

Generally, the interpretation of all the musical forms by Iakovos follows the Patriarchal tradition using the characteristic analysis of the melody. Every analysis is obligated to follow strict rules which give emphasis to the particular piece of music. In this way, the musical and poetic rhythms are completely identified, without the need to seek any conceptual or grammatical planning of the text.

The powerful development of the continuation of the melodic phrase, without the interruptions of abbreviations, assumes a well-trained breathing system and continuous practice. Both of these are ensured at the frequent rich and long patriarchal services. These characteristic traits of chanting expertise that is closely connected to the written musical tradition are assembled in Iakovos’ memory, as we can deduce from his effortless phonographic interpretations.

From the quick syllabic melodies Iakovos interpreted the entire Canon of the Small Paraklesis. This recording is indeed important because it imprints the scenic layout of that service. In an exemplary fashion, Iakovos demonstrates the range of the different single-strophe and many-strophe troparaic forms of Byzantine hymnography amongst the common structure of the monastic morning service with the hymns, Theos Kyrios, the dismissal hymns, the kathismata, the canon, the Gospel, the Magnificant, the Exaspolitaria, and the Panton Prostateueis Agathe at the dismissal.

The slow-fast and slow interpretations of Iakovos convey a clearly antique tradition. Iakovos truly interprets the figurativeness of the Byzantine melody and its power to adapt to every time period. He understood the axiom that every good form of art is buttressed by the convergent power of its past, its present, and its future. In particular, his return to the beautiful-voiced melodies from the hymn of Kassiani to the Idi vaptetai kalamos, the solemn hymns of Holy Week, the Haima kai pyr and the Antenise to omma are characteristically classic forms of Byzantine music and tradition which were recorded phonographically in a natural style without any form of accompaniment, such as a ground bass. Iakovos did not use the written score of these hymns, but kept them in his memory, considering himself as simply one link in the chain of tradition. This dimension of his work was not properly understood, to the point that some scores were mistakenly attributed to him. Besides, he did not publish any books, an action that would have forced him to standardize the Byzantine tradition, diminishing its authenticity, which, in the realm of the Orthodox East, does not allow for any subjective element, as well as the development of the personal artistic ability, to enter therein.

In his recordings Iakovos interprets old and new hymns of distinguished hymnographers and poets, both known and unknown. Amongst them one can find the great Byzantine poets: Romanos the Melodist, John of Damascus, Kosmas the Melodist, Kassiani the Nun, the Emperors Justinian and Leo the Wise. Distinguished composers and teachers wrote their music: John Kladas, Daniel the Protopsaltis, Peter the Lampadarios, and Iakovos the Protopsaltis. The hymns from the anonymous musicians comprise the feme “Ton despoti kai archierea,” and the Christ is Risen, but even more important solemn melodies are chosen, such as the Great Prokeimena, the Psyche mou, psyche mou, Allala ta cheli, the Panton prostateveis Agathe, and the Idi vaptetai kalamos. Finally, interesting melodies from the Thrice-holy hymn are also recorded, as well as the Synithismenon and the Dynamis of Georgios Kritos, and a Communion hymn of John the Protopsaltis.

At this point, it must be mentioned that historic circumstances forced Iakovos to reconsider to some degree his stance on the severe observance of the old ecclesiastical repertoire. In this way, a novel interpretation of Byzantine music appeared at the Patriarchate, which however grafted the proper general style of the Great Church. It is possible to observe this mostly in the hymns of the Divine Liturgy, such as the Cherubic hymn and other liturgical hymns, on which the young canonarchs whose voices have not yet changed offer assistance. It is known, that the Protopsaltis Iakovos endured powerful confrontations over issues of ecclesiastical music because of his attachment to the ascetic and modest nature of the music. This resulted in his various initiatives that came as a response to the exhortations to create larger choirs in the Patriarchal Cathedral. The Patriarchal liturgical hymns he recorded on the phonograph in Pl. 4th mode and the Cherubic hymn [Pl. 1st mode] clearly demonstrate his unwavering respect to the liturgy. These melodies comprise the standard for the regeneration of Byzantine music, which to this day are the most popular and pleasing pieces.

The truly ingenious musicianship of Iakovos appears, along with others, in his recordings of the Apostolic and Gospel Readings. We had the good fortune that the Epistle Reading of the Sacrament of Holy Baptism and the First Resurrectional Gospel were salvaged. Unfortunately, we found the Gospel reading from the Small Paraklesis and the hymns Doxsa Patri, Pater Loge Pnevma, kai nyn, Tes tis Theotokou, Mi katapistefsis me on a shattered disc.

The unique and very important phonographic recordings preserve the authentic tradition of ekphonetic melodies, just as it has been preserved at the Great Church. It is thus possible to have a technique which is essentially supported by a constant and austere melodic form which is governed by a precise design, rather than to have either chanted-reading or plain reading, excluded from worship on account of its subjective or ostentatious element.

It can be observed from the phonographic recordings that Iakovos Nafpliotis adhered to the ancient tradition of the Patriarchal hyphos. He refrains from every new attempt of enrichment of the musical repertoire and systematically occupies himself with the classification of the interpretations by the chanters of the past. His exemplary efforts to display Byzantine music, as he inherited it from his predecessors and his rich phonetic qualifications rendered him a chief interpreter and a preeminent teacher. Of course, the fact that he did not work on composing himself is due to his conscious choice to work exclusively and deeply with the art of the interpretation of Byzantine music, which of course he imprinted in his phonographic works. This indicates that the methodology and the educational outlook of his work, which he demonstrates with his voice on the phonographs, chanting by heart together with one of his best students and successor of his work, Konstantinos Priggos, who in fact succeeded him as Protopsaltis in 1939. It seems as though Konstantinos Priggos was pressured by his students to produce musical collections, such as Great Week, the Anastasimatarion, and the Doxastarion. He himself expressed his hesitation for undertaking this initiative, a hesitation that stemmed from his absolute respect for the chanting tradition that he received from his teacher Iakovos Naupliotes and that he handed down to his students, who were to become Protopsaltes. It is concluded from the researched done on the phonographic records that the current most learned musicologist the Archon Protopsaltis Leonidas Asteris unwaveringly chants their melodies within the same framework of memorization of the Patriarchal hyphos.


Antionios Alygizakis is a professor of Byzantine Chant and Musicology at the University of Macedonia. He is also the choir director of the University Byzantine Choir, Artistic and Scholarly Head of the Center of Ecclesiastical Music-Byzantine Liturgical Choir. He is a Protopsaltis, interpreter, composer, and researcher of Byzantine music and author of many musical works and scholarly musicological discourses.

He was born in Heracleion, Crete in 1946. He studied Byzantine music at the Hellenic Conservatory, theology at the University of Thessaloniki with a scholarship from the Government Scholarship Foundation [IKY], where he specialized in Byzantine music and received his Ph.D. with honors. He then continued his post-doctorate work in England. He participated in international musicological, Byzantine studies and theological conferences, presenting papers of original and unpublished material. His studies and publications deal with topics related to historical, theoretical, morphological, musicological, liturgical and hymnological issues that pertain to the Byzantine and post-Byzantine chanting traditions.

As the Scientific Coordinator of the European programs INTERREG II and EPEAEK, he established scientific research and teaching groups of Byzantine music, as he organized and equipped respective experimental workshops, thus realizing the re-edition of eight tomes of old printed musical books in the series Psaltica Blatadon of the Patriarchal Institute for Patristic Studies.

He annotated and recorded on disc and CD hymns of the Divine Liturgy and parts of the works of the post-Byzantine musicians Germanos of New Patra and Joasaph the Teacher of Dionysios Monastery. The University Byzantine Choir chants in the above recordings. Furthermore, he chanted in many choirs in Greece and abroad.

He organized international scientific conferences, within the framework of the “International Association of Byzantine Music.” He is in editor and contributor of the scholarly publication “Melourgia.” His recordings of the Anastisamatarion are soon to be released. He is also preparing his work, Byzantine Music, the Art of Musical Creation: History, Theory and Morphology.

He was a student of esteemed teachers of Byzantine music in Thessaloniki and later a Protopsaltis in various churches. He taught Byzantine music from 1972-1992 at the Theological School and from 1992-1998 at the Department of Musical Studies of the Aristotle University of Thessaloniki.

He was honored with the title of Archon Hymnodos of the Great Church of Christ.


vıı. Alphabetıcal Lıst of Recordıngs [ see p. 40 ]

vııı. Appendıx: Notatıon Sample

Two of the most important recordings of Iakovos Nafpliotis: 1. the Cherub Hymn and 2. the liturgical rubrics. Basic music hymns of the Orthodox Liturgy, adapted to children’s voices that chant together with the Protopsaltis with limited interventive ground bass. These melodies are models of recreation of the Byzantine music and are some of the most popular ones. Recordings from discs to post-Byzantine tablature. [ see pp. 49-52 ]

Tracklist:
CD1 :
01-Khristos gennatai
02-Esose Iaon
03-Megalynon psyhe mou, Mysterion ksenon
04-Theos on eirenes
05-Epeskepsato emas, Osoi eis Khriston
06-Me aporstrepses
07-Erkhomenos o Kryios
08-Khristos gennatai
09-Megalynon psyhe mou, Mysterion ksenon
10-Esose laon, To pantanaktos
11-Epeskepsato emas
12-Aima kai pyr
13-To prostahthen, Hallelouja
14-Te Ypermaho, Khere Nymfe
15-Tin Oraioteta
16-Atenisai to omma
17-Hallelouja, Idou o Nymfios
18-Ta pathe ta septa, E porne en klauthmo
19-Pasa pnoe, Erhomenos o Kyrios
20-En tais lamprotesi, O te psyhe rathymia
21-Ton nymfona sou blepo
22-Hallelouja, Ote oi endoksoi mathetai
23-Semeron krematai
24-Ede vaptetai kalamos
25-Ote ek tou ksylou

CD2:
26-To pantanaktos
27-Ten Oraioteta
28-Se ton tes Parthenou, Ote e amartolos
29-Kyrie Erkhomenos pros to pathos
30-Ton pathon tou Kyriou
31-Me apostrepses
32-E zoe en, Aksion estin, Ai geneai, Kathelon tou ksilou, Erranan
33-Eulogetos ei, Ton Aggelon o Demos, Ti ta myra
34-Tis Theos megas, O Theos emon, Agapeso se
35-Deute labate fos, Ten Anastasin Sou
36-Khristos Aneste (argon)
37-O Aggelos eboa, Photizou photizou
38-Anastaseos emera
39-Kyrie ekekraksa argon, (B anastaseos)
40-Kateuthyntheto argon, (B anastaseos)
41-To Soteri Theo, Ekyklose me, Se ten yper noun
42-Eis to oros
43-Dynamis synethismenon
44-Dynamis G. Kretos
45-Osoi eis Khriston, Dynamis
46-Aksion estin (tou gamau)
47-Aksion estin (enarmonion)
48-Epi soi khairei, ten gar sen metran

CD3:
49-Ten pagkosmion doksan
50-En te Erythra
51-Ton pathon tou Kyriou
52-Edokas kleronomian (Orfeon)
53-Edokas kleronomian (Odeon)
54-Hallelouja, Idou o Nymfios
55-Se ton tes Parthenou, Ote e amarttolos
56-Atenisai to omma
57-Nyn ai Dynameis A
58-Nyn ai Dynameis B
59-Psyhe mou, psyhe mou, Ten pasan elpida mou
60-Bouleuterion Soter
61-Porne proselthe soi
62-Doksa kai nyn, Kyrie e en pollais
63-Kyrie ekekraksa, Pasa e ktisis
64-Theos Kyrios, O eushemon losef, Ote katelthes
65-Pasha ieron, Deute apo theas, Ai myroforoi gynaikes, Pasha to terpnon

CD4:
66-Semeron o Khristos en Bethleem
67-E gennesis Sou, E Parthenos semeron ton Yperousion tiktei
68-Ten heira sou ten apsamenen
69-En lordane, Epephanes semeron, En tois reithrois semeron
70-Sygkatavainon o Soter, Ouk epeshynthe
71-Semeron proerhetai
72-Ai geneai pasai, Nenikentai
73-Ton Agion Pateron A
74-Ton Agion Pateron B
75-Ton despoten (varys)
76-Kyrie eleison, Tais presveiais, Sosom emas, O monogenes Yios
77-Deute proskynesomen, Soson emas, Eulogetos ei
78-Kyrie soson tous eusebeis, Kai epakouson emon, Konstantinou tou Panagiotatou
79-Adelfoi, osoi ois Khriston, Hallelouja
80-To kairo ekeino, Doksa soi, Eis polla
81-Oi ta Khereuveim, os ton basilea, tais aggelikais, Eis polla
82-Oi ta Khereuveim, tais aggelikais, Eis polla (B recording)

CD5:
83-Agapeso se Kyrie, Patera Ion, Eleon eirenes, Kai meta, Ekhomen, Aksion, Agios agios, Amin, amin, Se ymnoumen
84-Aineite koinonikon A
85-Aineite koinonikon B
86-Eidomen to phos, Eie to onoma, Ton despoten
87-Os ton ekhmaloton, Eulogetos ei, Ou siopesomen pote
88-Theos Kyrios, Te Theotoko
89-Ygran diodeusas, Pollois synehomenos, Pathon me, Sotera tekousan, Nosounta
90-Ouranias apsidos, Prostasian ke skepen, Iketeou, Euergeten, Khalepais, Diasoson, Epiblepson
91-Presbeia therme, Eisakekoa, Ton pathon mou, Eusplaghnias, Apolauontes, Oi elpida, Akhrante
92-Photison emas, Empleson Agne, Lytrosai emas, Lyson ten ahlyn, Iasai Agne
93-Ten deisin, Thanatou, Os teikhos
94-Diasoson, Epiblepson, Akhrante, Prostasia
95-Oi ek tes loudaias, Ten emon soterian, Thesauron, Somaton
96-Metavole ton thlivomenon, Kyrie eleison
97-Ton Basilea, Tous boetheias, Ton iamoton, Tas astheneias mou, Ton peirasmon sy
98-Kyrios Theotokon, Roen mou, Kharas mou, Limen kai prostasia, Photos sou, Kakoseos
99-Aksion estin, Ten ypseloteran, Apo ton polion mou, Desponia kai Meter, Psallomen, Alala ta kheilei, Pasai ton Aggelon
100-Apostoloi ek peraton, O glykasmos ton Aggelon
101-Deute teleutaion aspasmon