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Pascha Chants - a living tradition
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Live performance at the Assembly Hall - AUB. Live recording

True tradition does not solely consist of preserving a past heritage; it is also and especially a transmission and a presentation of the living heritage value, so as to respond to the need of continuity that drives the human being: a continuity not for a way of living but for a way of becoming. (E. Timiadis "spiritualita ortodossa" Brescia 1962)

Conservatism in Byzantine music does not stem from behind beliefs: it reflects a concern of the church to preserve the praying experience transmitted by our forefathers thourghout the ages. On the other hand, conservatism is not synonymous with non-development. In fact, the latter has never been away from Byzantine music. Yet, development should be carefully conducted, based on a strong knowledge and a concern to preserve the aim of chanting, that being the word chanted, and the praying of the believers.

Our success story

The Assembly Hall first concert was another break through. The Assembly Hall, of the American University of Beirut (AUB), is a Theater known for hosting the major classical and cultural (non religious) events in town. We were able to book it with the help of Dr. Souheil Najjar.

LBCI, the leading National TV station covered the concert. This was not the first performance they cover for us, yet this time, the difference was that they scheduled to broadcast the program on Friday at 9PM that is the peek hour. This means that the product that we are offering and that has a 100% religious, clear, spiritual, and direct content, has become under demand of all the TV audience.

After that day, SEM became one the leading choirs in Lebanon (and not in Orthodoxy only). All TVs started asking to cover our concerts. We performed in the program of the anniversary of LBCI…

We became the only Byzantine Choir known on the National level.

Read the full story...

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