Recreating the Kithara of Ancient Greece | Michael Levy


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A ‘live’ performance of “Hymn to the Stars” – track 3, from my 2016 album, “The Ancient Greek Kithara of Classical Antiquity”. Available from all the usual digital music platforms including Spotify, iTunes, Apple Music & Amazon, lossless studio quality audio is also available from Bandcamp.

The kithara was the highly advanced, large wooden lyre favoured by only the true professional musicians of ancient Greece, which reached its pinnacle of perfection during the “Golden Age” of Classical Antiquity, circa 5th century BCE. My album “The Ancient Greek Kithara of Classical Antiquity” features the wonderfully recreated Kithara of the Golden Age of Classical Greece – hand-made in modern Greece by Luthieros:

Since late 2014, I have been collaborating with Luthieros in their inspirational “Lyre 2.0 Project” – dedicated to reintroducing the wonderful lyres of antiquity back into the modern world, to make these beautiful instruments accessible to each and every modern musician.

This new series of recordings hopefully demonstrate why the kithara was so venerated in antiquity, as the instrument of the professional musician – perfect for both accompanying the human voice and for as an incredibly versatile solo instrument.

This piece is an evocation of the type of melody which may have once accompanied a recitation of the 6th Orphic Hymn, “To The Stars (Astron)”:

“With holy voice I call the stars [Astron] on high, pure sacred lights and genii of the sky.
Celestial stars, the progeny of Night [Nyx], in whirling circles beaming far your light,
Refulgent rays around the heav’ns ye throw, eternal fires, the source of all below.
With flames significant of Fate ye shine, and aptly rule for men a path divine.
In seven bright zones ye run with wand’ring flames, and heaven and earth compose your lucid frames:

With course unwearied, pure and fiery bright forever shining thro’ the veil of Night.
Hail twinkling, joyful, ever wakeful fires! Propitious shine on all my just desires;
These sacred rites regard with conscious rays, and end our works devoted to your praise.”

This piece is in the distinctively poignant ancient Greek Phrygian mode, (a conjuction of 2 tetrachords which form the equivalent intervals as D-D on the white notes of the piano, but heard here with my kithara in authentic just intonation), which also can invoke a unique sense of timelessness and mystery, perfect for a song of praise to the immortal stars of the celestial spheres…

For much more ‘musical adventures in time travel’please also check out all my official artist links below:


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