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בִּשִׁיבָה | Bịs͡hịˈvàh | By the Assembly is a promise of communal confession sung on יוֹם כִּפּוּר | Yọm Kịˈpụṛ | the Day of Atonement.
Communal prayer is important in Judaism, especially on Yom Kippur, where it is prefaced by Bishivah. The word לְהִתְפַּלֵל | ḷəhịtpạˈḷéḷ |, commonly translated as to pray, literally means to judge oneself, and in the עַל חֵטְא | ‘Ạḷ Ħéyt’ | Concerning the Sin — the Great Confession on Yom Kippur, we all confess our sins of the past year together as though each of us had strayed in all the ways that any of us had or might have. But in Jewish communal prayer, praying together does not necessarily mean praying in unison. Often we pray at our own individual paces, with some novices closely following their more-experienced neighbors while others have already moved on to the next prayer; and yet somehow the disparate voices rise and fall with a single harmonious spirit. This song, with its closely spaced voices in two harmonizing melodies of incommensurate meters whose highs and lows nevertheless coincide, tries to capture the characteristic jumble of voices in orthodox Jewish communal prayer. The musical progression from a hesitant triple-time melody wandering in a divergent round in the A section to the resolute quadruple-time call to confession soaring calmly above it in a parallel round in the B section is meant to focus our minds on the upcoming confession while attuning our spirits to the diversity of people around us.
There is also a Ladino version of this song, called פר לה אג׳ונטה | Pọṛ ḷạ Ạˈjụntạ | Por la Adjunta By the Assembly.
This song in the Jewish scale can be sung either as a simple stretto round with up to 4 voices at 1-beat intervals, or as a simple square quodlibet round harmonizing the apparently incompatible 3:4 and 4:4 sections, or in combination, as a full double canon with up to 4 voices in each section. The provided score and MIDI recording start by introducing the entire melody solo, repeat with a duet between melody and countermelody, and add voices in pairs on subsequent repetitions. The characteristic jumble of voices emerges when all four pairs of voices have joined in.
In this score, only the first line is shown in 3/4 rhythm, because Sibelius can't notate polymetric music.
http://sefaradizo.org/muzica/bishivah/ Sephardic Association of Órgiva, Granada, Andalusia, Spain 2018.11.18 English edition
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