Women composers

  1. Hildegard of Bingen

    In almost every last five or six centuries there have been women who have composed music. Surprisingly,they were accepted in the circles of male composers and were highly appreciated,their works were widely performed and are still included in concert programs today. In musical world, highly dominated by male composers,music composition for a woman seemed to be considered more of a hobby, no matter what heights she took, but some names that have not sunk into the darkness of centuries I am introducing to you today.

    One of the most famous female composers of the Middle Ages, Hildegard lived in the German lands in the eleventh century. She has been in poor health since childhood. It is not surprising that parents preferred to prepare her not for marriage, but for a spiritual career. She went from novice to abbess of the monastery. In addition, she led the construction of a nunnery, where novices of non-noble origin would be accepted (since monasteries provided education and the opportunity to make a career, many monasteries practiced class restrictions).She was one of the best-known composers of sacred monophony, as well as the most recorded in modern history.

    From a very young age, Hildegard wrote spiritual hymns – both lyrics and music. She was distinguished by a unique author’s style – courage in melodies. The trend was rather monotonous motives, while Hildegard allowed herself strong transitions in pitch. She also wrote several texts dedicated to her visions and current medical practices of that time, but she remained in history precisely as a composer.

    Although the history of her formal canonization is complicated, regional calendars of the Roman Catholic Church have listed her as a saint for centuries. On 10 May 2012, Pope Benedict XVI extended the liturgical cult of Hildegard to the entire Catholic Church in a process known as “equivalent canonization”. On 7 October 2012, he named her a Doctor of the Church in recognition of “her holiness of life and the originality of her teaching.”

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