Renaissance Fare Archive

Summer 2021

Renaissance Fare in June featured vocal and instrumental music written by the English composer John Dowland. We included tracks from a unique 2006 recording by the popular contemporary artist Sting. The album is entitled Songs from the Labyrinth and features Sting playing the lute and singing. The program aired on Monday, June 14, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, June 20, at 5:00 p.m.

In July, Renaissance Fare focused on one of the most popular composers from the Italian Renaissance, Claudio Monteverdi. He is considered a transitional figure in the progression from the Renaissance into the baroque period. We heard music from L’Orfeo, considered to be the oldest opera still being performed. The program aired on Monday, July 12, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, July 18, at 5:00 p.m.

In August, Renaissance Fare highlighted the most famous French composer of the period, Josquin des Prez. He died exactly 500 years ago this month, August 27 1521. He was so popular that he was generally referred to only as “Josquin,” a 15th-century Elvis! He wrote motets, sacred music chansons, and ballads. The program aired on Monday, August 9, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, August 15, at 5:00 p.m.

Spring 2021

The month of March is probably best known in Roman history for the Ides of March, March 15, when Julius Caesar was assassinated in 44 BCE. In recognition of emperors and kings, Renaissance Fare will concentrate on the music of the royal courts of Europe. Music became more accessible to the common person during the Renaissance, but the great palaces and churches were the primary source of great musicians and composers. The program aired on Monday, March 8, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat performance on Sunday, March 14, at 5:00 p.m., the eve of the Ides of March.

Renaissance Fare in April celebrated the beauty and hope of spring with music that touches on some of the big events of that month, such as Easter and Earth Day. Our April edition aired on Monday, April 12, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, April 18, at 5:00 p.m.

Summer is a comin’, and there are many great Renaissance tunes that celebrate this most popular season of the year. We danced around the May pole and celebrated the lusty month of May. The program aired on Monday, May 10, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, May 16, at 5:00 p.m.

Winter 2020–21

The month of March is probably best known in Roman history for the Ides of March, March 15, when Julius Caesar was assassinated in 44 BCE. In recognition of emperors and kings, Renaissance Fare will concentrate on the music of the royal courts of Europe. Music became more accessible to the common person during the Renaissance, but the great palaces and churches were the primary source of great musicians and composers. Tune in on Monday, March 8, at 7:00 p.m. There will be a repeat performance on Sunday, March 14, at 5:00 p.m., the eve of the Ides of March.

Renaissance Fare in April celebrates the beauty and hope of spring with music that touches on some of the big events of that month, such as Easter and Earth Day. Join me for our April edition on Monday, April 12, at 7:00 p.m. and/or Sunday, April 18, at 5:00 p.m.

Summer is a comin’, and there are many great Renaissance tunes that celebrate this most popular season of the year. We will dance around the May pole and celebrate the lusty month of May. Be sure to join us on Monday, May 10, at 7:00 p.m. and/or Sunday, May 16, at 5:00 p.m.

Fall 2020

Renaissance Fare in September featured madrigal music from the 16th century. Madrigals originated in Italy in the 1520s and quickly expanded to France, England, and Germany by the end of the century. The madrigal is secular, vocal music usually featuring two to six voices and unique harmonies. The program aired on Monday, September 14, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, September 20, at 5:00 p.m.

October is the month we commemorate the exploration of America in 1492. This month we’ll turn back the clock a little further and listen to music from the late 1300s through the fifteenth century. Much of the music from this period originated from Italy as well. Listen on Monday, October 12, at 7:00 p.m. or to the repeat broadcast on Sunday, October 18, at 5:00 p.m.

After October’s program, it seems natural to listen to music the English settlers would have been listening to when they landed at Jamestown, Virginia, in 1607. We’ll hear how the music changed from the late 15th to the early 17th centuries. This edition of Renaissance Fare will be heard on Monday, November 9, at 7:00 p.m. and repeated on Sunday, November 15 at 5:00 p.m.

Summer 2020

Renaissance Fare in June featured interesting biographical facts about some of the top composers of the Renaissance period. We know a lot about Bach, Handel, Beethoven, and Mozart. But what about John Dowland, Josquin des Prez, Thomas Morley, and Michael Praetorius? Listen and learn! The program aired on Monday, June 8, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, June 14, at 5:00 p.m.

In addition to lutes and stringed instruments, horns of many types were very popular as well, especially for dance music. The July edition of Renaissance Fare featured  Canadian BrassEmpire Brass, and other groups who play wonderful horn arrangements from the Renaissance period. It aired on Monday, July 13, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, July 19, at 5:00 p.m.

We wrapped up the summer with some of the best recordings by the most popular Renaissance groups today—the Toronto ConsortFolger ConsortPiffaro, the Renaissance Band; the Baltimore Consort; and much more. This edition of Renaissance Fare was heard on Monday, August 10, at 7:00 p.m., and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, August 16, at 5:00 p.m.

Spring 2020

Renaissance Fare in March concentrated on the music of the great kings! We heard recordings by Early Music New York, the Folger Consort, the Baltimore Consort, and other popular groups playing music of the Renaissance period. The program aired on Monday, March 9, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast Sunday, May 15, at 5:00 p.m.

Renaissance Fare in April celebrated the beauty and hope of Easter time and spring. Our April edition aired on Monday, April 13, at 7:00 p.m. and had a repeat broadcast on Sunday, April 19, at 5:00 p.m.

During Renaissance Fare in May we were thinking, “Summer is a-coming.” It’s amazing how many great Renaissance tunes there are about this most popular season of the year. We played music that accompanies the traditional dancing around the May pole on Monday, May 11, at 7:00 p.m. There was a repeat broadcast on Sunday, May 17, at 5:00 p.m. Here is the playlist.

Piffaro, the Renaissance Band
Photo by Church Street Studios