May 19, 2013 ~ Shabbat BEHA'ALOTECHA. Maqam SIGAH.
The people are to take the new land’s first fruits to God’s holy place. There they shall recount to the priest their history – from Abraham to Egypt to that very day. “You have affirmed this day that Adonai is your God,” concludes Moses. In turn, Adonai will take Israel as a treasure, a holy people. After crossing the Jordan, Israel is to inscribe the Torah on stone pillars and conduct rites to affirm the covenant with God.
For Shabbat Ki Tabo (Deuteronomy 26:1-29:8), the prayers are conducted in Maqam Sigah (or most specifically, Maqam Iraq, which is part of the Sigah family). This maqam, which is used for reading the Torah, is used to mark Temple ceremonies as well as when there is an association with the holidays in the perasha. The beginning of the Torah portion discusses when the Israelites make pilgrimage to the Temple when conducting the ceremony of bringing the first fruits (bikurim). The other major ceremony in this Torah reading is the Covenant Ceremony in Chapter 27. In addition, Sigah is the maqam used on the holidays, and making pilgrimage to the Temple is traditionally done on the Shalosh Regalim holidays. Maqam Iraq would be appropriate due to the opening words of the declaration mentioned by the Israelites, “Arami Obed Abi”; Aram being the Syrian-Iraq region, which is the place of origin of some of Israel’s ancestors. HAZZANUT: It is traditional to apply the [Sigah] Selihot melody (Adon Yahid Yasad, page 67) for Semehim Besetam. ALIYOT: It is Halabi tradition NOT to stop in the middle of the Tokheha (rebuke) portions. Also, the Halabi tradition of the last generation was that the Aliyah of Samoukh reads from 27:9-28:69 (and not stopping at 28:6). MISHMARA: Tractate Bikurim (Sources: Hakham: Moshe Ashear, Mordechai Nadaf, Haim Shayo, Sephardic Pizmonim Project, www.pizmonim.com).
Daniel Kassar from Argentina:
The mezzamerim students of Hakham Refael Yanani that arrived to Shaare Siyon in Buenos Aires established the use of Maqam Nawa for Shabbat Ki Tabo.
Yomar Na Yisrael is used for Semehim, even though according to my knowledge it is not Nawa nor Sika. However, they accustomed to sing its melody for Elekha HaShem of the Selihot recited on Fridays. In addition, they have other particulars which they adopted. For example, Dar Rumá: Hashqifa Mimeon Qodshekhá and others.
Although at Yessod HaDaat in Buenos Aires they utilize Sika for this Shabbat, they utilize the same Semehim melody as us (Yomar Na Yisrael). In this case, however, it would be more proper for them to sing it with the melody of Adon Yahid Yasad.
Bikkurim (ביכורים, First-Fruits) deals with the first-fruit gifts to the Kohanim and Temple (Exodus 23:19; Deuteronomy 26:1).
The opening of the perasha talks about the misvah of first fruits (Bikurim)