The Kilians

The voice of the Sephardim

The voice of the Sephardim


Romantic to cheerful songs of the Spanish Jews

The voice of the Sephardim

"The alleys of the Jewish quarter of Cordoba are bustling with activity.
Just opposite the mesquita, music sounds from a courtyard. Sounds of the oud and the rebec, women's voices can be heard. Curious listeners are attracted. There is a smell of spices and fresh pastries. The singers sing their old Sephardic love songs."

Sepharad is Hebrew and means "Spain". In Arab-occupied Spain of the Middle Ages, Muslims, Jews and Christians lived in a multicultural society, they influenced each other not only in music.
In 1492, the Reconquista expelled the Sephardic Jews from the Iberian Peninsula. Their songs, which they had handed down by ear for centuries, they took with them to Greece, the Byzantine Empire and the Maghreb countries.
The songs of the Sephards often sound oriental and so Silke and Dirk Kilian also use oriental instruments like oud, riq, ney, davul, duduk, kaval and frame drum in their interpretation of the pieces. Bagpipes, shawms and key fiddle can also be heard.