Northwestern State University alumnus Elkin Hernando Cabeza Jimenez was able to recent do a favor for Professor of Flute Dr. Dennette McDermott as she was researching Czech Baroque composer, Jiri Čart.
Cabeza Jimenez, who earned a Master of Music degree from Northwestern State in 2017 and lives and works in Warsaw, Poland, was able to go to a local library, the Biblioteka Bobolanum przy Kolegium, Ksiezy Jezuitów, to help her obtain a copy of a violin concerto by Čart.
“Not all libraries have scans of 18th century manuscripts on their website or reported to RISM, (Répertoire International des Sources Musicales), which is an international reporting system that lists the whereabouts of original manuscripts,” said McDermott. “Contacting the library directly is customary to obtaining a copy of a manuscript, often they will mail a paper copy or a CDR, or email a link of a scan for a limited time frame. Some of these are already scanned and some are not.”
McDermott said the value of a scan is quite critical as music manuscripts and catalog records of libraries in the Ukraine are currently being rescued and stored on other servers through a project called SUCHO (Saving Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Online). McDermott was able to contribute to some of these recent rescues. This prompted her to ask for Cabeza Jimenez’s help in obtaining this very important manuscript, which seems to be the only surviving violin concerto of the composer.
McDermott has been researching this composer’s works for 25 years, collecting manuscripts from libraries in Germany, Sweden, Italy, Denmark, Belgium, publishing the first thematic index or catalog of his works and recently she updated the article on the composer for the New Grove Dictionary of Music and Musicians Online. She and NSU faculty member Dr.Douglas Bakenhus recently made a recording of seven flute sonatas of Čart on period instruments which will be available soon. McDermott has published these flute sonatas and continues to share this composer’s works with others.
Cabeza Jimenez earned a bachelor degree in vocal performance from Universidad de Antioquia in Medellin, Colombia, before coming to NSU. He has performed as a soloist in Medellin with the Orquesta Filarmónica de Medellin, and in his hometown, Cartagena de Indias, with the orchestra of the School of Fine Arts. Cabeza Jimenez has been part of the Opera Choir of Medellín, and the vocal ensemble Ensamble Vocal de Medellín, taking part in national and international tours. He works as a teacher of music and Spanish as a foreign language.