Instrument rental
  • Français
  • English
Legal NoticePrivacy Policy

Lyrical Baroque Ensemble

Nigra Sum

Claudio Monteverdi (1567-1643) and Benjamin Attahir (born in 1989)

“The human is our lung, music its heart. Monteverdi’s Vespers, in a reduced and redesigned version, unfold the backbone of our new world.”

The Encounter

« Nigra Sum sed formosa » (I am black but I am beautiful)  is a meeting between 
earthly and heavenly, , past and present. Taken from the Song of Songs, this poem 
was set to music in 1610 by Monteverdi in the Vespers to the Virgin, the heart of our creation. This work belongs to both the Judaic and Catholic traditions and carries within it a message of universality conducive to literary and musical variations. 
Thus we invite Benjamin Attahir, a contemporary composer, to join us in this creation. ​​
This young composer, whose scores are at the crossroads, like a symbiosis of influences from different eras, offers a harmonious clash where one can discern 
Beethoven here, Pierre Boulez there. 
Unclassifiable and resolutely contemporary, his signature is recognizable 
from the very first measures of his creations. ​

"Nigra Sum" is then defined as a fusion where the contemporary breaks through the sacred work of Monteverdi.

Light Creation

A light creation will accompany this sound journey, to transform the space that surrounds us and encompass us with the audience, to the rhythm of the music.​


As part as the “New Worlds” program
Vespers to the Virgin (1610) by Claudio Monteverdi
An original creation by Benjamin Attahir

Artistic & musical director •Sébastien d’Hérin
Staging & dramaturgy •Caroline Mutel
Writers • Lancelot Hamelin/Mark Froidefond

Sound engineer • Félix Perdreau
Lighting • Stéphane Babi Aubert

Orchestra • 17 artists (2 violins, 3 violas da braccio, 1 bass violin, 1 double bass gamba, 2 cornets, 3 sackbuts, 1 dulcian, 2 lutes, harp, organ)
Soloists & Choir • 12 singers (8 choristers et 4 soloists, SSSSAATTTTBBB)
School choir (12singers)