Published: Feb. 21, 2017

MSU Music presents early music group from the Netherlands

Contact(s): Kathleen Adams College of Music office: (517) 353-9958

Commemorating the 500th anniversary of the death of painter Hieronymus Bosch, MSU College of Music presents Cappella Pratensis, a vocal ensemble specializing in Renaissance music.

The concert will be held at 7:30 p.m., Feb. 28, in MSU Auditorium’s Fairchild Theatre and is the final installment of the 2016-17 Taylor Johnston Early Music Series. This performance will give audiences the opportunity to experience music of the 16th century.

The Dutch-based vocal ensemble Cappella Pratensis, perform the music of Josquin Desprez. The group combines historically informed performance practice with programs and original interpretations based on scholarly research and artistic insight. As in Josquin’s time, the members of Cappella Pratensis perform from a central music stand, singing from the original mensural notation scored in a large choir book. Founded in 1987, Cappella Pratensis is currently under the artistic direction of singer and conductor Stratton Bull.

“The College of Music is so fortunate to welcome this renowned group to our stage,” says David Rayl, series curator and director of MSU choral programs. “Cappella Pratensis gives us the opportunity to hear glorious repertoire performed live by one of the best vocal ensembles in the world.”

In addition to regular appearances at concert venues in the Netherlands and Belgium, Cappella Pratensis has performed at leading international festivals and concert series throughout Europe, North America and Japan. 

The Feb. 28 concert will feature works by Pierre de la Rue, Gregorian chant, and motets by Jean Mouton. The music is drawn from the choir books of the Confraternity of Our Illustrious Lady, of which both Bosch and la Rue were members.

Admission to the performance is free for students with ID and anyone under the age of 18. Tickets are $10 for adults, $8 for seniors and can be purchased online at the College of Music box office by calling (517) 353-5340, or in person. The concert is part of the Taylor Johnston Early Music Series.

The ensemble will offer workshops for music students, entitled “Nuts and Bolts of Renaissance Polyphony,” which are open to the public and will be held in Fairchild Theatre: Feb. 27, 1:50 p.m. and Feb. 28, 8:30 a.m. The ensemble also invites students and the public to sit in on an open rehearsal from 10 to 11 a.m. on Feb. 28.

In addition to the performance, a free screening of the documentary “Bosch: In the Garden of Dreams” will be offered March 2 at 6 p.m. in the Main Library. This event is co-sponsored by the College of Music and the Department of Art, Art History and Design and will be presented by Susan Bandes, professor of art history.

More information can be found online.

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