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18 March 2012


Renaissance, Inside and Out 

Gli strumenti delle meraviglie
TODAY, AT THE UNIVERSITY OF CHICAGO'S ELEGANTLY AUSTERE ROCKEFELLER CHAPEL, the groups The King's Noyse and Piffaro joined forces under the auspices of the city's premier early music ensemble The Newberry Consort to perform music from the Renaissance court of Ferrara. What a wonderfully transporting experience it was, and I was only somewhat saddened to see it not as well attended as one might hope. My experience in Italy of Early Music events is that they are popular, in every sense, and the crowd is often quite young (and funky). Not so today. But, no matter, the performers were top notch, and they were having fun to boot.

I've found one of the biggest challenges for those of us who love the Old Masters is making the connections with others of similar, if parallel, interests. Why is there not more synergy between early music and contemporary classical artists and architects (apart from the fact that the classicists aren't all that enamored of the Renaissance, as I've written before, even if they can't help loving Italy)? One way to start is following the links on this post to those resources that are out there, and keep following them down the rabbit hole--you never know what might turn up.

Noble Warriors I
Turning up outside the Rockefeller was, strangely enough, a small cohort of medieval knights in armor, reenacting ad hoc a bit of knightly battle. They were oblivious to the concert that had just gone on a few hundred feet away, and some of my fellow audience amusedly stumbled on these erstwhile Round Tablers. Full of good cheer and ladened with heavy armor, they were happy to chat and display their chivalrous combat. And what's wrong with that? Would that these serendipities happened more--or maybe they're happening all the time and no one notices.

Noble Warriors II
So, like the Mayne Stage chalkboard from my previous post, here's to only in Chicago, and pictures worth a thousand words.

Oh, and by the way, they're doing Bach St. Matthew's Passion at the Rockefeller on Palm Sunday....

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