International Conference. Music for the Office and Its Sources in the Low Countries (1050-1550) Antwerp, Conference Center Elzenveld, August 21-24, 2010
The office is the most substantial portion of the liturgy, and has incited medieval and Renaissance composers to contribute to its musical splendour for at least half a millennium. In all types of communities and services, whether of monastic, cathedral, or courtly signature, the office formed a crucial part of their musical culture. Because the Low Countries knew an unprecedented variety of communities and institutions, the contexts in which the office was celebrated in the region were equally varied. Indeed, the wealth of sources for the office from the Low Countries has led many scholars to study selected aspects of the celebration of the office in the region, such as prose or versified historiae, tropes and prosulas, motets composed for Vespers and Salve services, and 'paraliturgical' pieces.
This conference sets out to explore the variety of the extant repertory and its sources, by bringing together new research into the music for the office in, or related to, the Low Countries (understood to include Northern France and the Meuse-Rhineland), and studying plainchant as well as polyphony and their interrelations.
Scholars and performers studying chant and/or polyphony from analytical, historical, liturgical, or interdisciplinary perspectives are invited to send proposals of no longer than 350 words to pieter.mannaerts@arts.kuleuven.bebefore February 15, 2010. Notification of acceptance will be given by March 15, 2010. The final conference program will be published around April 1, 2010, on the website of the Alamire Foundation ( The program committee is currently being composed, and will be announced within the coming weeks.
All IMS-languages may be used (English, French, German, Italian, Spanish); the principal conference language will be English.
The conference, supported by the International Musicological Society Study Group "Cantus Planus", will take place during the yearly festival Laus Polyphoniae (Flanders Festival Antwerp), and in close collaboration with the festival program. Participants will have a unique opportunity of hearing concerts related to the conference theme, which will thus include both chant and polyphony from Low Countries sources. A selection of conference papers will be published in the internationally peer-reviewed Journal of the Alamire Foundation in 2012.

Dr. Pieter Mannaerts
Postdoctoral Fellow | Research Foundation--Flanders
Katholieke Universiteit Leuven | Musicology | Alamire Foundation
T +32 476 56 98 38 | M| W