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'Ye Olde Madrigale Dinner' slated for Dec. 3 and 4

RELEASED: Nov. 22, 2010

madrigale dinner photoEAU CLAIRE — The University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire Chamber Choir will present the 19th annual "Ye Olde Madrigale Dinner" at 6:30 p.m. Dec. 3 and Dec. 4 in the Council Fire Room of Davies Center.

The dinner features a 15th-century-style banquet, show and selections of madrigal style music performed by the Court Chamber Choir, directed by Dr. Gary Schwartzhoff, professor of music. The choir, composed of 16 UW-Eau Claire musicians, plays a royal court celebrating a successful harvest and the excitement of the holiday season. The court has gathered in the Great Hall of Lord and Lady Chamberlain's castle where they will share a night of laughter over the antics of the court jester.

The performances will include a variety of musical experiences. The Court Chamber Choir will perform a number of selections, including Ludwig von Beethoven's "Two Hymns"; "The Holly and the Ivy," arranged by Daniel Burton; and "Make We Joy Now in This Feast" by Malcom Archer. The Court Consort, Court Harpist, Court Brass Choir and Court Thespians also will perform.

Each December, the ensemble prepares and performs "Ye Olde Madrigale Dinner." As a result of its popularity, the dinner is performed twice during each holiday season. In Renaissance period costumes, the choir members recreate lords and ladies, dukes and duchesses, counts and countesses, and even a king and queen. Throughout the evening, these "Royal Court Singers" not only perform music from the madrigal tradition but also sing songs of the holiday season and conclude the festivities with a short play. At "Ye Olde Madrigale Dinner" patrons enjoy an authentic renaissance feast and are even encouraged to come dressed in period costume.

Tickets, available at the University Service Center, 715-836-3727 or 800-949-UWEC, are $25. Tickets must be reserved at the Service Center by Nov. 30. There will be no ticket sales at the door. The doors open at 6 p.m. each night, with festivities starting at 6:30 p.m.

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KJ/RD/DW

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