Madison Early Music Festival – “A Cabinet of Curiosities: Journey to Lübeck” Concerts, Workshop & Events, July 7-14, 2018

The University of Wisconsin–Madison Division of the Arts announces the 19th annual Madison Early Music Festival (MEMF) Workshop and Concert Series, “A Cabinet of Curiosities: Journey to Lübeck” from July 7-14, 2018 on the UW–Madison campus. MEMF will explore the 500th anniversary of the Reformation and how the shifts in religion and 16th century printed materials, including music, changed the world. MEMF will feature music from Northern Germany, including Italian and German sacred music from the recently discovered Choir Library at the Marienkirche (St. Mary’s Church) in Lübeck, Germany. MEMF is also presented in partnership with the Mead Witter School of Music.

The musical history of the Marienkirche began in the 14th century, and by the late 1600s included a legacy of organists, including Franz Tunder and Dieterich Buxtehude. Buxtehude attracted musicians from all over Europe, including George Frideric Handel, Georg Phillipp Telemann and Johann Sebastian Bach.

Participants will experience a full week of music, history and culture from Northern Germany, through classes, lectures, dances and concerts taught and performed by some of the world’s finest early music artists. Guest artists for the concert series include Quicksilver (July 7); Piffaro, The Renaissance Band (July 8); Abendmusik, featuring organists James Kennerley and John Chappell Stowe along with MEMF faculty (July 10); and Schola Antiqua (July 13).

The Madison Early Music Festival is internationally recognized as a top early music festival that features music from medieval, Renaissance and baroque eras from award-winning performers (including Grammy Awards) and distinguished faculty. Unique to MEMF is the culminating All-Festival Concert (July 14), featuring participants and faculty performing together in the final concert.

MEMF Workshops

During MEMF, registrants have over 30 instrumental, voice and dance classes to choose from ranging from beginner to advanced classes. Instruments include bagpipes, dulcian, harp, lute, percussion, recorder, sackbut, shawms, viola da gamba and violins. Participants learn from faculty, many who are artists in the guest ensembles. Registration is $575 ($475 for full-time college students). Learn more at

MEMF Concert Series

The MEMF Festival Concert Series features four Guest Ensemble Concerts, two MEMF Participant Concerts and a culminating All-Festival Concert. All evening concerts begin at 7:30 p.m. in Mills Concert Hall (Humanities Building, 455 N. Park St.) with free pre-concert lectures at 6:30 p.m. unless noted otherwise.

Individual concert tickets are $20 ($10 students) unless noted otherwise. The week-long Festival Concert Pass is $90. Concert tickets are available at the Campus Arts Ticketing Box Office (Memorial Union, 800 Langdon St.), online, (608) 265-2787 or at the door. There will be a $4 convenience fee on phone and online orders.

Saturday, July 7

Quicksilver |
“Wunderkammer: A Cabinet of Wonder from the 17th Century”
Mills Concert Hall, 455 N. Park St. | 7:30 p.m. | $20/$10

Wunderkammer, or “wonder rooms,” were cabinets containing wide-ranging collections of objects whose categorical boundaries were not defined. With new found compositional freedom, 17th century composers similarly created many musical wonders, stretching the boundaries of musical conversation, welcoming the influences of migrants, and exploring new means to communicate the depths of their experiences.

Performers include Robert Mealy and Julie Andrijeski, violins; Greg Ingles, sackbut; Charles Weaver, lute and theorbo; Lisa Terry, viola da gamba; and Avi Stein, harpsichord and organ.

Sunday, July 8

Piffaro, The Renaissance Band |
“Back Before Bach: A Musical Journey”
Mills Concert Hall, 455 N. Park St. | 7:30 p.m. | $20/$10

A time capsule meant to show the musical precedents that set the stage for German baroque music, namely the works of Johann Sebastian Bach. Piffaro’s performance will feature historic winds and brass instruments, including recorder, shawms, sackbuts, bagpipes and more.

Performers include Joan Kimball, Bob Wiemken, Priscilla Herreid, Grant Herreid, Greg Ingles, Christa Patton, Kiri Tollaksen and Liza Malamut.

Tuesday, July 10

With organists James Kennerley and John Chappell Stowe & MEMF Faculty
Luther Memorial Church, 1020 University Ave. | 7:30 p.m. | $20/$10

“Abendmusik” is an evening concert, usually performed in a church. For this particular concert, the title refers to a series of performances at the Marienkirche in Lübeck, Germany. In the 17th century through 1810, a series of concerts were paid for by local business owners to provide free admission for the public. Organists Franz Tunder and his successor Dieterich Buxtehude, organized the Abendmusiken with performances of organ, instrumental and vocal music.

Performers include: James Kennerley and John Chappell Stowe, organists, with members of the MEMF 2018 faculty.

Friday, July 13

MEMF Participant Concert
Mills Concert Hall, 455 N. Park St. | 1:00 p.m. | Free

Madison Early Music Festival workshop participants perform in ensembles that have been coached by faculty artists throughout the week of the Festival. No pre-concert lecture.

Friday, July 13

Schola Antiqua |
“Voices Across the Divide”
Mills Concert Hall, 455 N. Park St. | 7:30 p.m. | $20/$10

From pre-Reformation Germany to Protestant France, Schola Antiqua sings musical treasures from a program prepared last fall for The Newberry Library’s exhibit “Religious Change 1450-1700” on the occasion of the quincentennial of the Lutheran Reformation. Printed musical artifacts from the multidisciplinary exhibit testify to a period filled with religious dynamism and struggle with both theological and musical traditions.

Performers include Michael Anderson, William Chin and Matthew Dean along with additional guest artists.

Saturday, July 14

MEMF Advanced Loud Band Concert
Morphy Recital Hall, 455 N. Park St. | 2:00 p.m. | Free

Participants from this workshop will perform a program that includes works by Heinrich Isaac, Heinrich Finck, Paul Hofhaimer and Ludwig Senfl.

Saturday, July 14

MEMF All-Festival Concert
“Journey to Lubeck: The Musical Legacy of the Reformation”
Mills Concert Hall, 455 N. Park St. | 7:30 p.m. | $20/$10

While Petrus Hasse, Franz Tunder and Dieterich Buxtehude were serving as organists of the Marienkirche, they assembled a choir library of some 2,000 works, which were catalogued in 2015 by Kerala J. Snyder for the first time. The program will include selections from this collection, along with works by Dieterich Buxtehude and others.

Additional MEMF Event

MEMF Dance Event “Tanzen und Springen” featuring music and dance instruction by MEMF Faculty on Thursday, July 12 at 7:30 p.m. (Great Hall, Memorial Union, 800 Langdon St.). Suggested donation of $10 at the door.

Fringe Event

Sonata à Quattro will perform on Wednesday, July 11 at 7:30 p.m. (Pres House, 731 State St.) Tickets at the door are $10 for MEMF participants and faculty, $20 for the general public.

About the Madison Early Music Festival |

A program of the UW–Madison Division of the Arts, the Madison Early Music Festival (MEMF) was established in 2000 to provide an opportunity for musicians, scholars, teachers and early music enthusiasts to gather and exchange information and ideas about medieval, Renaissance and baroque music – and to bring acclaimed early music artists and scholars to Madison. Each year, MEMF explores a different cultural, historical and regional theme and offers over 30 different courses during the festival to correspond to that specific theme.

MEMF 2018 is presented by UW–Madison Division of the Arts in collaboration with campus partner Mead Witter School of Music. Leadership support provided by Colony Brands, Inc. Generous program support is provided by the UW–Madison Anonymous Fund; The Evjue Foundation, Inc., charitable arm of The Capital Times; the UW–Madison University Lectures Committee; and Dane Arts with additional funds from the Endres Mfg. Company Foundation, The Evjue Foundation, Inc., charitable arm of The Capital Times, the W. Jerome Frautschi Foundation and the Pleasant T. Rowland Foundation.

Additional funds provided by the William J. Wartmann Endowment for the Madison Early Music Festival, the Jane Graff Bequest for Madison Early Music Festival and Friends of the Madison Early Music Festival.