Madrigal dinner brings Christmas spirit


Tess Riecke

The 46th annual Madrigal Dinner, directed by Matthew Armstrong, took place this past weekend in the Kanter Student Center.

Kori Siebert, Staff Writer

Taking Wayne State College back in time to the Renaissance Period for the 46th annual year, was the Madrigal Dinner directed by Matthew Armstrong.

“The madrigal choir is a class that happens all year round, but the dinners only happen once every fall at Christmas time,” said senior Victoria McNamara. “It was tradition for madrigal choirs or renaissance times that they have this fest during Christmas time, so we try to replicate that here on campus.”

The performance was around two hours long and involved a full meal, lit candles, costumes and a number of musical pieces and a play portion as well.

“They’re doing some really interesting pieces this year,” said Sarah Farr, production supervisor. “In addition to the traditional carols from the time period, they’re also doing some arrangements by Benjamin Brittan, who took that very traditional renaissance type music, but then put some modern spins on, it so it’s kind of an old new combination that I think is really interesting.”

A couple of the carols might have been the same from the year before, but they choose a different play each year. In addition to a different play, they also decided to create new introductions and new toasts this year.

“I love being the one that gets to make all the jokes and gets to run around and do whatever I want,” said McNamara. “It’s kind of a freeing experience but at the same time it’s kind of stressful.”

McNamara said Saturday was the biggest turnout for audience members, but the space was still full on Friday and Sunday.

“I was in the campus play two weeks before this and so I had to have all the blocking and all of those lines down along on top of this,” McNamara said. “For me, the hardest part was the quick turnaround between the two performances.”

The cast this year involved around 20 members. Four of those members were seniors and were paid a tribute during their final performances at the madrigal dinner. The seniors were Olivia Nottlemann, Emily Popelka, Kelsey Kardell and Victoria McNamara.

“The students have really put a lot of hard work on it and it’s fun,” Farr said. “They do the music very well and they put a lot of work into it but it’s really an entertaining evening there are a lot of comedic elements so it’s really a fun night for them to put on.”

The madrigal dinner put on a performance on Friday for the students at 7 p.m., and put on performances for everyone who bought a ticket on Saturday and Sunday.

“It’s a killer group that if you want to try it, go for it. Renaissance music isn’t everybody’s thing, but as soon as you hear those chords lock in, they make beautiful music,” said McNamara.