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Bela Domna

The common denominator to these 12 lyrical pieces consists in the fact that the lyrical ‘I’, in all of the songs, stands for a woman, which does not mean that we are here dealing with ‘female’ poetry, in the generic acception of the word: femininity is first and foremost a textual notion, and its expression in poetry and music, whether sincere or not, has to meet a number of strict criteria.

To prove the point, let us mention that the authors of the songs, when they are not anonymous, are either women poets, identified as such (e.g. the Occitan trobairitz), or possibly men poets also identified as such, specifically in the case of Cantigas de Amigo.

They generally sing of love, particularly unhappy love affairs, unhappy for various reasons: the betrayal of the loved one, his leaving for an overseas destination, or perhaps even his death.
This is all about secular lyricism, of course, but it can also ‘drift’ towards a form of religious poetry, through the use of the same genres, the same topoi and the same formal and musical processes : the Virgin is substituted for the domna, and Christ stands for the man-friend.


Bela Domna
Noble Ladies and Courtly Love

Katia Caré
: mezzo - research and musical reconstruction
Gisela Bellsolà : alto
Instrumental ensemble ‘L'Itinéraire Médiéval’

Anello Capuano
: percussions, ud, saz
Jérôme Crunelle: viol
Florence Jacquemart: mediaeval recorders
Jean-Luc Lenoir : crwth, dulcimer, mediaeval harp and lute
Guy Robert: harp, saz, sarrasenic guitar

A Jade CD, recorded by Jean-Marc Laisné at the Château of Sédières in November 2002

1. Par maintes fois - Duch. de Lorraine
2. Ja de chantar - Na Castellosa
3. En greu esmai - Clara d'Anduza
4. Ab lo cor trist - anonyme catalan
5. Li solaust luit - "Roine Iseut"
6. A chantar - Beatrix de Dia
7. Amour ou trop tard - Blanche Castille
8. En Lixboa - anonymus
9. Sedia la fremosa - Estevam Coelo
10. Mia yrmana fremosa - Martim Codax
11. Ay eu coitada - Rei Sancho IV
12. Lassa, mais m'agra valgut - anonymus





L’idée centrale de ce disque, qui se place sous l’ombre tutélaire de Claude Debussy : offrir des exemples d’écriture virtuose pour le piano dans des œuvres de quatre jeunes compositeurs français nés entre 1965 et 1975.