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Sunday October 9, 8pm


THE València OF THE Xarq Al-Andalus

Music around Al-Rusafi, poet of the Almohad Valencia

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Ali Keeler, violin and solo vocals

Youssef El Mezghildi, qanun

Omar Benlamlih, solo voice and percussion

Salma Vives, cello

Muhammad Domínguez, percussion and chorus

Efrén López, oud


The València of the Sharq Al-Andalus

Ayatun-Nur, recitation of the Qur'an

The Call, Aleppo traditional song

Blooms in the medina, traditional Mediterranean song

Back to the one and only, lute taqsim in maqam Rast

Gul Yuzunu, Turkish Sufi song

Celtic Salawat

Save Valencia!, poem by Ibn Al-Abbär (València 1199 - Tunis 1260)

Uzzal Pesrev, instrumental

Atainaka bil Faqri, moaxaha by Abu al-Hasan al-Shushtari (Guadix? c.1203 - Egypt 1269)

Andalusí song, poem by Muḥammad ibn Ġālib al-Rusāfī (València c.1141 - Málaga 1177)

Al- Madha Moorish, Moorish in Aljamia language

Al Fiyashiyya, traditional Andalusi song


Al Firdaus Ensemble is an Andalusian and Sufi music ensemble based in the city of Granada, it is composed of professional musicians of Moroccan, English and Venezuelan origin.

When the musicians tune their instruments they also tune their hearts to receive the inspiration of the moment and in this way raise the audience to a state of contemplation.


This type of music is traditionally defined with the Arabic word sama´ which could be translated as the art of listening. The very original style of his music is a compilation of different musical styles and includes original themes with Celtic and flamenco influences, as well as arrangements of songs from the rich legacy of the Sufi tradition from Arabic, Andalusian and Turkish sources.


The songs are mainly in Arabic with lyrics from the poetry of the great Sufi masters of Al-Andalus and the Arab world, Ibn Arabi and Al Shushtari. His repertoire includes adaptations of poems written in Aljamiat, the language written by Andalusian Moors during the 16th century using the Arabic script



The  program "La Valencia del Xarq Al-Andalus" brings together different songs and melodies of Andalusian tradition around the poet known as Al-RUSAFI.


Abü 'Abd Allah Muhammad Ibn Gàlib al Rusafí is considered the best poet of Valencia of the Almohad period. Although he wrote his production in Malaga, he is the great nostalgic singer of Valencia. His Valencian Elegy is the masterpiece, not only of this author, but of all the poetry continuing the Jafayí style, written by Valencian Arabic poets.


He was born in Russafa, a district of Valencia, in a date that some historians place in the middle of the twelfth century, perhaps 1141. Valencia is in the poet's memory as the distant and beloved homeland; the lost paradise from which he left as a young man and to which it is impossible to return.


This distance inspires him with magnificent verses and turns the home of his ancestors into a magical name, full of literary resonances that had turned it into a garden paradise in the poems of Ibn Jafaya or Ibn al-Zaqqaq, poets whose al -Rusafí is considered a disciple and follower




Saturday, October 9, 7pm

Lucentum XVI

Francesc de Borja

Music for the 450th anniversary of his death

Pere Saragossa, shawms and direction

Quiteria Muñoz, soprano; Carla Sanmartín, alto

Jesus Navarro, tenor; Giorgio Celenza, bass

Carlos García-Bernalt, organ

Xavier Boïls, cornetto; Vicent Osca, sackbut; Antoni Lloret, shawms;

Antoni Llofriw, dulzians; Fernando Fernández, lute;  Facundo San Blas, percussion

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francesc de borja

· La Bataille, by Clément Janequin (c.1485-1558), of the Dixiéme livre (Amberes, 1545) of Tielman Susato

· Rondeau «Ce jour», by Guillaume Dufay (c.1397-1474)

· Ave Maris Stella, by G. Dufay / Booksongs of Montecassino (c.1480)


· Miserere Nostri – Vexilla Regis, C. Montecassino


· El cervel mi fa, anonymous of the Booksong of Palacio (c. 1500)


· Susanne un jour, d’Orlando de Lassus (1532-1594)


· Credo in unum Deum of the Mass about Susanne un jour, by Orlando de Lassus.


· Makam Muhayyer «Kúme» usules Düyek Acemler, Turkish war march.

· Passio Domini nostri Iesu Christi secundum Mattheum*, by Jan Nasco (c.1510–1561) and Joan Baptista Comes (c.1582-1643)

*Named as «Passion de Valencia» by Joan Baptista Comes (Escorial Monastery Archive, c.1607)


lucentum xvi

Group of ministers (instrument players) led by Pere Saragossa , created to interpret and spread the rich and varied musical repertoire of the Renaissance. Bands of wind instruments, with the name alta capella , spread throughout cities and towns in Europe in the 15th and 16th centuries. The main function of the ministers within the liturgy was to accompany the vocal music, dubbing the voices. In the civil sphere, the high chapel was in charge of performing dances, popular songs, and love pieces and epics of courtly and popular origin.

Lucentum XVI's performances include those performed in Bari and Molfetta as part of the Anima mea de la Puglia Festival (Italy), Musical Vespers of the Monastery of Pedralbes, Festival of Ancient Music of the Pyrenees, Serenades Festival of the University of Valencia, Music Festival Antiga de Morella, Clásicos en la Frontera a la Ribagorça, Festival of Contemplative Music of Santiago de Compostela, Festival of Sacred Music of Benicàssim, Festival of Ancient and Baroque Music of Peñíscola.

In 2021 they published their first record work with the title " El Cantoral del Monestir de Santa Maria de la Murta d'Alzira ", a disc of which the specialized critic has said "The execution is absolutely exquisite, full of balance in the excellent voices and the instruments (...). The album is a gem, both for the interpretation and for the unprecedented and beautiful polyphony and for the documentation.» (Manuel de Lara Ruiz, Scherzo Magazine, June 2021).

Programme notes

francesc de borja

This programme comemorates the 450th anniversary of the death of Francesc de Borja i Aragó ( Gandia 1510- Roma 1572) who was Duke of Gandia, Lieutenant of Catalunya, later joining the Jesuit order being proclaimed a Saint in 1671, for which reason the Catholic church is now celebrating the 350th anniversary of this fact.

In this concert we present  the premiere in modern times , of the Passion of Our Lord Jesus Christ according to Matthew, a work which Ferran d'Aragó, viceroy of Valencia and Duke of Calabria commisioned from the Flemish composer, Jan Nasco ( 1510-1561) to give as a gift to the Cathedral of Valencia , being known at the time as the Passion of Valencia.


This work is part of the repertoire of the choir of the monastery of Murta d'Alzira, a musical body to which our group has dedicated the first of their albums released earlier this year.

The representation or interpretation of the Passion according to Matthew , where the gospel of this prophet is narrated, took place in the Roman Catholic liturgy during the Mass of Palm Sunday (the following Tuesday was the gospel of Saint Mark, on Wednesday, the gospel of Saint Luke and on Good Friday the gospel of Saint John.).

The main characters of the Passion are Christ, the Evangelist narrator and the crowd, the so-called  “mob” played by the whole congregation.

The score for the crowd has not been found in the Monastery of Alzira , so it could have been performed in plain singing or  in a now lost poliphony.

But some parts sung by the crowd appear in poliphony for 6 voices originally written by the Valencian Joan Baptista Comes ( chapel master in the Cathedral of Valencia, successor to Josep Prades) which is in the monastery of San Lorenzo d'El Escorial, a Jerónimo monastery, like that of Alzira. And the interventions of the mob, but for  4 voices, appear in a document of 1561 signed by Jan Nasco himself.

Since the Second Vatican Council, held between 1959 and 1962 the singing of the Latin Passion has been replaced in almost all diocese by the reading of the Passion in the vernacular language  ( except in our territory where our own language is not used.). 

Together with this great work we present among others pieces from the Cancionero de Palacio , the palace of Queen Isabel of Castilla ( the Catholic) and king Ferdinand of Aragón, and the Songbook of Montecasino ( Naples) a collection written in the 1480s  which accompanied Alfons and Roderic de Borja to Rome where they became Popes with the names Calixtus lll and Alexander Vl.

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