Wednesday, November 16, 2016

Renaissance # 25


Sound on Sound Music Fest Debuts at Sherwood Forest Faire

Set in a Renaissance fest village, the inaugural Sound on Sound Fest, adopted a medieval theme. Expect to see Robin Hood, lute players…

The stage is called the Dragon’s Lair, and around its facade curls a massive, ornately designed dragon, custom-built for the event. Facing out into an open field that is usually part of the Sherwood Forest parking lot, this the only part of the space that has a conventional festival feel.

The rest of the event is built into an expansive medieval village in a shady grove. It was lovingly constructed by a group of Central Texas Renaissance enthusiasts with a passion for Olde English culture, wooden stockades, rotten tomato tosses, turkey leg banquets and all.

“One of the reasons we love this space so much is there’s so much infrastructure already here,” SOS Fest marketing director Ian Orth said. “We really worked very closely with Sherwood to make sure we could use as many of the actual buildings as possible.”

Festival vendors will take over many of the old-timey stalls and shops (shoppes?) scattered across the grounds. As punk bands such as the Descendents play on the Forest stage and indie rockers including Girls Against Boys perform on the Keep stage near a replica castle, the Fat Friar will serve the same turkey legs he provides to Ren Festers…

Film Review: Inferno

The film Inferno is based on the novel of that name by best-selling author Dan Brown, whose books have been translated and published in more than 40 languages worldwide. Brown’s ‘The DaVinci Code’ and ‘Angels & Demons’ were made into films in 2006 and 2009 respectively. The author likes to explore theological enigmas from the late Middle Ages that relate to our lives today. He presents mysteries that are unraveled through code – written symbols, not programmer coding (though the process may be somewhat similar to hacking). The frightening premise of Inferno is a comparison of the Black Plague of the 1300’s to our epidemic of overpopulation that exists today. From 1347 to 1352, at least 25 million people in Europe succumbed to the Plague, bringing the estimated population of the continent down from 75 million to 50 million. The pandemic was not only terrifying– it also had severe social, political, economical and religious repercussions, as does the problem of Earth’s overpopulation today. Understanding this particular history will help you navigate the film.

The movie is based on Dante’s circles of Hell from his Divine Comedy, one of the great works of world literature, which he began in 1308 and finished in 1320. This epic poem illustrates the Medieval view of the afterlife, as the soul journeys through Hell (Inferno), Purgatory and Heaven (Paradise). The film has an interesting juxtaposition of backstories, as Dante was lucky enough to escape witnessing the Plague since he lived from 1265 to 1321. An important clue used in the film is a map of Hell created by Boticelli, the legendary painter (1445-1510), based on Dante’s description of Inferno. Both of these great figures called Florence their home. That city was a hotbed of the arts during the early Renaissance....

Past Faires

Lady of the Lakes Renaissance Faire (FL)

The cast is comprise of 165 drama students, and over 200 culinary students cook food at the event.

The storyline for the faire goes like this: The year is 1606 and King James I is on the throne. King James is the son of Mary, Queen of Scots and great-grandson of Henry VIII. It has been a year since the Gunpowder Plot and Guy Fawkes' attempt to blow up Parliament. The king and his wife, Queen Anne of Demark, have been invited to the Shire of Shrewsbury to enjoy festivities during the annual Autumn Festival…

There were seven stages, a jousting field, chess board, two other performance areas and a fairy grotto…

About 30 groups and 100 individuals performed throughout the faire. Also, about 50 artisans will be on hand demonstrating skills in metal (swords), pottery, leatherwork, candle making, jewelry, clothing corsets, head covers and kilts…

Kearney Park Renaissance Faire Fresno, Calif.

Nottingham Festival
“...The Nottingham Festival is a recreation of a true Elizabethan village during the reign of Queen Elizabeth the first,” said Jan Glasband, of Simi Valley, co-creator of the event along with Josie Hirsch, also of Simi Valley...
Glasband said groups of people, or guilds, are committed to historical reenactment in order to share a sort of living history with attendees. The thrust of the festival is to educate guests while giving them a chance to experience a real step back into history, Glasband said.

“So there are all kinds of demonstrations that these guilds do — they teach the public what life was like back then,” Glasband said. “So you’ll see people making fabric with looms, and people forging tools out of metal...”

Live entertainment — which includes five performance stages — is a huge aspect of the festival.

“Everybody’s in costume — the food vendors and the merchants, and of course our entertainers,” Glasband said. “We’ll have dancing and acoustic music and live shows, and even a little bit of sword play. We’ll have themed actors and a lot of comedy and silliness in the streets. It’s really a wonderful representation of what you might expect from a village fair back in the early days of Queen Elizabeth’s reign.”

The first annual Nottingham Festival brought about 3,500 guests, and this year’s event is expected to draw 20,000 people, Hirsch said.

“These are not only performers and vendors, but guests who fly in from all over the country for our event,” Hirsch said. “I am personally excited to do my holiday shopping there because for every person on my list, I can give them something they’ve never seen before.”

At least 65 vendors are participating in this year’s festival.
For instance, Hirsch said, there is "a jewelry maker who uses a torch to make glass beads and works the metal to set his stones into custom-designed pieces. We have a shoe manufacturer who will take a mold of your foot and make a special boot just for you. And we have a sweater manufacturer who makes the most beautiful re-purposed sweaters into gorgeous works of art.”

There is also a fencing booth, hair braiding and Elizabethan games for children…

Another unique aspect of the festival is the Renaissance Master’s Pavilion performance venue on site. “It’s like the heart of this fair,” Glasband said. “These are costumed actors who portray various historical figures — Da Vinci, Michelangelo and Anne Boleyn — and they tell stories throughout the day and it’s continuous. Plus there’s a (question-and-answer session) afterward, which is such a cool aspect...”

The Summerville Renaissance Festival (GA)

…Pageantry, arts, music, dancing, artisans, theater, food and more. Renaissance performers from Georgia and Tennessee were on hand to give festival goers a magical experience on five different stage areas.

The festival opened with an official welcome from “King Henry” at 10 a.m. on the front deck of the Summerville Depot. Cast members from The Rome Shakespeare Festival, Russell Evans, Payton Cambell and Brendon Earp performed a sword fight in the street immediately following. Live musical entertainment and special acts were scheduled throughout the entire day...

A traditional “Pub Sing” was held from 5-6:00 p.m. to close out the festival inside the Summerville Depot, better known as “The Pub.” Carriage rides by Once Upon a Carriage were available for downtown rides from 5:30–8:30 p.m.

To continue the evening, The Rome Shakespeare Festival performed "Romeo and Juliet..."

Complete article:

Rennaissance People

Samuel Lee - Armorer

If you’ve ever been to the Scarborough Renaissance Festival in Waxahachie or dined at Medieval Times in Dallas and wondered where those exotic period-piece costumes come from, you’re closer to one designer than you probably think.

Samuel Lee - armorer, fantasy costume designer and owner of Prince Armory - is situated in a building you may have driven by a million times in Dublin, Texas..

What Lee does is remarkable; true fine art that people who are into medieval fantasy can wear. No two pieces are alike and his designs have sold for $10,000 - and up.

“There’s really no upper limit dollar wise,” he says. “If someone wants something very detailed and intricate and has the budget, I’ll certainly give them what they want….

Complete article and picture:


Attic Caravaggio will go on display

A painting discovered in a French attic that was controversially deemed to be a Caravaggio will go on display at a top Milan museum from Thursday alongside authenticated works by the Renaissance master.

"We do not want to take part in the debate over the authenticity of the painting, we just want to allow it to be compared to contemporaneous works by Caravaggio," said a spokesman for Milan's Brera museum of painting, where the work will be on display until February 5.

The 400-year-old tableau made headlines in 2014 when the owners of a house near the southwestern city of Toulouse discovered it while investigating a leak in the ceiling.

It depicts a biblical scene -- the beheading of an Assyrian general, Holofernes, by Judith -- and was in remarkably good condition when it was found. Experts said at the time that it could be worth 120 million euros ($132 million)….

Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation
The Minneapolis Institute of Art (Mia) is presenting the first exhibition in the United States to explore the indelible impact of the Protestant Reformation through major works of art, as part of an international initiative to commemorate the 500th anniversary of Martin Luther’s “Ninety-Five Theses on the Power and Efficacy of Indulgences.” On view through January 15, 2017, “Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation” will feature paintings, sculptures, gold, textiles and works on paper—many of which have never before left Germany—as well as Luther’s personal possessions and recent archeological finds from his boyhood homes to shed new light on the critical religious, cultural and societal changes of this tumultuous and transformative period. The anniversary will be observed around the world on October 31, 2017.

“Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation”at Mia is organized in partnership with four German institutions—the State Museum of Prehistory in Halle, Luther Memorials Foundation in Saxony-Anhalt, German Historical Museum in Berlin, and Foundation Schloss Friedenstein in Gotha. The Luther House in Wittenberg, Germany is closed in 2016 for major renewals of its permanent exhibition for the Jubilee Year 2017, which has allowed key works to travel to Mia for this unprecedented exhibition.

“Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation” places particular emphasis on Luther’s use of art as a tool for worship, teaching and propaganda. Among the works on view will be paintings by Lucas Cranach the Elder (1472-1553), who was inspired by Luther’s preaching to develop didactic paintings that vividly depict the viewer’s choice between salvation and damnation. Cranach’s narrative paintings illustrate biblical stories in brilliant colors and ravishing—sometimes gory—detail, and his stylized portraits capture the humanist spirit of the age. Additionally, several vandalized objects by other artists will be presented to underscore the intense emotional reaction in the wake of Luther’s protest.

A major portion of the exhibition devoted to Luther’s personal life will feature recent archaeological finds from his boyhood homes in the towns of Eisleben and Mansfeld, as well as his house in Wittenberg, the base for his history-making activities. Excavations, undertaken in 2004 and 2005, uncovered household goods that reveal new information about Luther and his family. A selection of those objects will be displayed for the first time in the United States and offer new insights into Luther’s daily life, especially his childhood.

“The objects in this exhibition have strong visual and emotional presence. Not only do they tell the fascinating story of the man and his impact on religion and politics, but they also continue to reverberate today,” said Tom Rassieur, Mia’s John E. Andrus III Curator of Prints. “With the incredibly generous support of our German colleagues, we are excited to be able to share spectacular works of art and new discoveries with the public, and to vividly bring Luther’s world to life for contemporary audiences.”

Exhibition Themes and Highlights

“Martin Luther: Art and the Reformation”is organized chronologically and comprises eight primary sections:

“Boyhood,” in which the archeological findings at Luther’s childhood homes will be displayed;“Secular Power,” which features rare paintings, prints, sculpture depicting the rulers and courtly life of the era, as well as opulent status symbols belonging to the most powerful men of the age;“Pre-Reformation Piety,” which presents paintings, carvings, goldsmith’s work, and vestments associated with late medieval and early renaissance Catholic practice;“Luther as Monk, Scholar, and Preacher” includes the notorious indulgence chest of Wittenburg, a 1517 printed copy of the “Ninety-Five Theses,” and the final pulpit from which Luther preached—newly-restored for the exhibition;“Luther’s Theology” features Lucas Cranach’s Law and Grace, the 157-panel Gotha Altar, and some of Luther’s own hand-written notes for his translation of the Bible;“Luther’s House as the hub of the Reformation,” featuring the furniture from his studio, his personal possessions, portraits of Luther, his wife Katarina von Bora, and their associates, as well as additional archeological finds from Luther’s home—from jewelry and pen knives to tiles and glass—that embody his daily life and international status;“Polemics and Conflicts” underscores the turbulence of the era through vandalized works of art, satirical woodcuts, weaponry and war trophies; and “The Legend,” which highlights the establishment of Luther’s posthumous reputation through memorial objects such as the model for his grave marker, the debating stand of the University of Wittenburg, and relics that gave his followers tangible bonds to their spiritual leader.
Additional highlights from the exhibition include:

Sixteen paintings from Lucas Cranach the Elder’s studio, two-thirds of which are autographed, including The Death of Holophernes (1531), and Law and Grace (1529), one of the most influential allegories of the Reformation, which underscores Luther’s belief in faith as the path to salvation. Several of these works also showcase a shift from the lifelike compositions of the Renaissance to more stylized figural representations, solidifying Luther’s use of art as a tool for communicating to a broader public.


The evening is a plunge into medieval music of church, court and street musicians, and a tour of love and devotion, pious or earthly, around western ...

Complete, fascinating article:

Concert by Spectra Musica

The program will present a sampling for European music spanning approximately 150 years, highlighting the transition in culture from the Renaissance to early Baroque era. The quartet will play historical instruments, including a replica of a harpsichord from the 1550s...

Spectra Musica was formed in 1980 as an ensemble dedicated to the performance of early European music. They produce programs of music from about 1400 to 1650 AD. The ensemble specializes in music for wind instruments.
Late Medieval and Renaissance music is performed with cornemuse, kortholts, recorders, flute, rackett, dulcian and viola da gamba, with a small Italian harpsichord as continuo...

Late-Medieval French Song

...The Notre Dame Medieval Quartet presented late medieval music as it was often performed at the time, with one singer per part and without instruments. The program offered songs by Guillaume de Machaut from the Ars Nova period, by Solage and Jacquemin de Senleches (including the latter's famous "La harpe de melodie") in the mannerist style, and the early Renaissance sounds of Dufay and Binchois.

Madrigal Dinner at Simpson College (Iowa)

The biannual Renaissance-themed Christmas dinner at Simpson College will be happening Dec. 2-3.

The Madrigal Dinner has been around since 1962. Originally an annual event, the event was moved to every other year due to the excessive amount of preparation needed.

Robert Larsen has been the director of the event since its birth.

“It’s the enactment during the turn of the 16th Century when Christmas was celebrated in a very lavish way,” Larsen said. “It’s a two-and-a-half-hour concert of music and carols…
Sophomore Rosa Gude is one of the few students who were able to snag a part of the production. “Basically when you go to the Madrigal Dinner, it’s like stepping back in time to the Renaissance,” Gude said. “We do it exactly like it was back in that era, all the way down to the meal that would’ve been exactly what they would’ve eaten back in the day...

“They have to be very well-disciplined students that learn languages very easily,” Larsen said. “We sing songs in Italian, French, German and Spanish, so they have to be very multilingual....”

“I relish the Renaissance,” Larsen said. “The music is delightful and communicates very well, and it still very much appeals to the present day. We’ll be doing loads of carols, some of which everyone will recognize. In between singing, we will have instrumentalists playing interludes to add even more variety to the show...”

Colchester Early Music

6th November: TROUVERE with Richard De Winter (vocals)
Revel and Melody: the music of medieval England from the conquest to the Wars of the Roses - music for dancing plus songs of love, war and devotion.

20th November BLONDEL
Owre Kynge went forth: A life of Henry V in Music including irresistible dances, compelling love songs, a motet composed for his wedding and of course the famous Agincourt Carol itself. This concert is based on Blondel's new album which will be released for free download later this year, courtesy of the Agincourt600 committee.

27th November Carl Suter (lute) with Tony & Lizzie Knight (volcals)

A Dialogue on a Kisse: A posie of 16th and 17th-century songs on the fancies of love, including music from Dowland, Ford, Campion & Lawes

When th’Instruments they can scarce hold: tales and tunes of a Wait's life including readings from surprisingly entertaining readings from the Hall books of Lynn.

11th December THE YORK WAITS
Godday my Lord Sire Christemass: Seasonal music from the 12th-17th centuries on shawms & sackbuts, harp, gittern, fiddles, recorders, bagpipes, hurdy-gurdy and rommelpot...

All concerts are at St Andrew's Church, Church Lane, Marks Tey, CO6 1LW England

Complete article:

Voces8, a London-based vocal octet

...This particular mixed-gender ensemble stands as one of the classiest and most versatile ensembles to rise out of that enduring (and still totally cool) fad.

Classy because they devoted one-fourth of their program Tuesday to works associated with the British cathedral and chapel tradition. That they had a different take on that tradition was obvious in the opening solo phrase of Palestrina’s Magnificat, delivered with an almost operatic vibrato that promised a particularly dramatic approach to the tradition of unaccompanied choral music. And, though this ensemble of two women and six men (including two male altos, or countertenors) generally relied on the low-vibrato tone, they demonstrated not only in the classical repertoire but in the rest of the concert a wonderful flexibility of timbre and unusually broad expressive range.

After Palestriana, the group turned to the Latin motet Laudibus in Sanctis of Palestrina’s English contemporary William Byrd. Here, they emphasized the wonderful fluidity of the melodic lines and the almost dance-like character of this engagingly joyful ecclesiastical music. Furthermore, these singers introduced an absolutely convincing dynamic range not often dared by performers of Renaissance choral music, at one point moving from pianissimo to fortissimo in a matter of seconds....

Complete article:

Tallis Scholars review: A night of remarkable iridescence and intensity

The Tallis Scholars, under founder and director Peter Phillips, have developed and – in brief and shining moments – perfected a distinctive and emblematic sound that has become so closely associated with English renaissance music that is easy to forget there is any other way of approaching it.

The tone has pristine clarity, balance and purity with extremely lean use of vibrato. The resulting blend has an edge of brightly focused resonance that is flexible enough to adapt to the music's interweaving undulations in a way that is responsive and lithe...

Three anthems by the early 17th century master Orlando Gibbons, music of gentle liveliness (O Clap Your Hands), floating mellifluousness (Lift up Your Heads) and darker expressiveness (O Lord, in thy Wrath)....

In music by their namesake, Thomas Tallis, they produced music of tender warmth and touching simplicity (If ye Love Me)...
Both halves contained glorious music by Henry Purcell...

Renaissance Wind Band--Spectra Musica

The Renaissance wind band--Spectra Musica features European music of the 16th and 17th centuries played on wind instruments of the period. 

These winds include forerunners of the modern bassoon—the kortholts and the dulcian—two instruments that are rarely heard, as is the cornemuse, an early bagpipe.  Other instruments played in both ensembles are the harpsichord and tenor viol (or viola da gamba), and recorders.
Spectra Musica presented a concert of 16th and 17th century dances, aires, fantasias and sonatas at St. Andrew's Episcopal Church in Lambertville, New Jersey.

Players include Orum Stringer,f, Ernest Meyer, Kenton Meyer, and Elizabeth Horn.

Orum Stringer studied Baroque recorder technique with Prof. M. S. Rubin in New York.  After coming to Philadelphia in 1973 he extended his studies to include music of Medieval and Renaissance Europe.  He mastered the Renaissance cornetto and kortholt, and. in 1975, began singing with the Bryn Mawr-Haverford Renaissance Choir under the direction of the late Edward Handy. He teaches recorder and cornetto and has directed large ensembles in meetings of the American Recorder Society, and in workshops of the Historical Brass Society.  He sat on the board of the Lower Makefield Society for the Performing Arts (Bucks County, PA) for eight years, and for twelve years, was the artistic director of the Lake Afton Concert Series sponsored by St. Andrew's Church, Yardley, PA.  He served two years as president of the Princeton Recorder Society and sits on the board of the Guild for Early Music (Princeton) which serves member ensembles in the Delaware Valley.

Ernest Meyer holds degrees from Temple and New York University. He has performed extensively in the Philadelphia area as an oboist with such ensembles as Concerto Soloists, Pennsylvania Pro Musica and the Delaware Symphony Orchestra.  He joined the Gloria Consort as a harpsichordist in 1999. 

Kenton Meyer holds BFA, MM and MLIS degrees from The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, where he studied flute with Israel Borouchoff and Samuel Baron.  He earned a PhD in musicology at the University of Iowa, specializing in performance practices and the history of musical instruments.  His dissertation:  The Crumhorn, was published by the UMI Research Press in 1983.  He served on the faculties of Marquette University, The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, and the Wisconsin Conservatory of Music.  He has performed with the Milwaukee Symphony Orchestra and the Milwaukee early music ensemble Les Jongleurs.  For twenty-six years Dr. Meyer was Assistant Librarian at the Curtis Institute of Music in Philadelphia.

Elizabeth Horn, a Harvard University graduate, has sung in the Princeton University Chapel Choir for over 20 years.  She is a founding member of both The Engelchor Consort and Armonia, a Renaissance and a Medieval group respectively, where she sings and plays recorders, crumhorns, violas da gamba and various percussion instruments. She has studied viola da gamba with famed gambists Mary Springfels, Mary Ann Ballard and Rosalind Morley.

Music from 1594 still moves us in 2016: The deep meaning of 'Tears of St. Peter'

…Music historians have never quite known what to make of the late Renaissance composer Orlando di Lasso, or, for that matter, even what to call him. (Sometimes he’s Orlande or Roland, and sometimes De Lassus.) Musicologist Richard Taruskin calls him, simply, a loose end. Di Lasso’s style never fully conformed to the luxurious perfection of his age. His bizarre harmonic explorations, along with his attraction to lurid or mystical subject matter, could get him into trouble.

He wrote some 300 Masses, more than 2,000 compositions over all, but we don’t know how many exactly. (There has never been a compete published edition of his works.) One thing, though, has long been fairly certain: It is best to steer clear of Di Lasso’s last piece, “Lagrime di San Pietro” (Tears of St. Peter).

But when someone says, “don’t,” that has more than once told artistic director Grant Gershon what the Los Angeles Master Chorale should do. On Saturday night at Walt Disney Concert Hall, he opened a new season with 21 singers from the chorus premiering a revelatory staging by Peter Sellars of Di Lasso’s 21-madrigal cycle.

Normally, we turn to death-invoking music for its transformative powers. The final great works of Beethoven (the late string quartets), Mozart (the unfinished Requiem) or Mahler (the Ninth Symphony’s probe of dying embers) help us transcend despair.  Di Lasso’s “Lagrime,” however, is by a deeply depressed composer in the days before meds, someone who only wants his misery to end. It did in 1594, three weeks after finishing the score…

Because Di Lasso’s music is full of sublime beauty, the most convenient way to deal with the unrelenting despair of “Lagrime,” on the rare occasions it is performed or discussed (it is, for instance, treated as a mere aside in the Cambridge University Press volume of “Orlando di Lasso Studies”), is to bask in glowing religiosity. But the revelation offered by Sellars and Gershon is to avoid Revelation altogether. For them, “Lagrime” is a profoundly human contemplation of the relationship of these two men…

Each madrigal, set to rhymed Italian stanzas by Renaissance poet Luigi Tansillo, is a small contrapuntal masterpiece consisting of seven individual melodic lines that flow as currents, never standing alone, but ever completing and renewing thoughts. The overlaps create unpredictable harmonies that can make your hair stand on end…

Jesus has the last scathing word:  “I have experienced such ingratitude from you.”  But Sellars allows us to hear it as being spoken in love, not anger. Members of the chorus, up from their chairs, hug one another. Gershon is among them. Di Lasso’s wandering harmonies have somehow wandered into our own. Sorrow and bitterness are replaced by awe.

“Lagrime” is a major accomplishment for the Master Chorale, which sang and acted brilliantly. It is also a major accomplishment for music history. The company hopes to keep this production alive, touring it, and if the music business chooses to honor the just, that will be a saint’s compensation.


Shakespeare’s Curtain Theatre

A three-month detailed excavation of Shakespeare’s Curtain Theatre by MOLA archaeologists has revealed details of a stage that is much longer than originally thought with evidence of a passageway running beneath it. Archaeologists can now also confirm that the theatre was a purpose-built structure at the rear of another building on Curtain Road in Shoreditch.

MOLA experts are hoping to uncover more secrets about the relationship between the unusual shape of the stage, the production and staging and the mysterious backstage areas through further detailed analysis.

The Curtain Theatre was intentionally built as a rectangular theatre to house plays and activities. This was not a repurposed space with a stage, it was a place where people came to be immersed in entertainment. It had timber galleries with mid and upper areas for those who could afford to spend a little more, and a courtyard made from compacted gravel for those with less to spend.

The Curtain Theatre is one of earliest Elizabethan playhouses where people paid money to see performances and be entertained. This is known because fragments of ceramic money boxes have been found, which would have been used to collect the entry fees from theatregoers and then been taken to an office to be smashed and the money counted. This office was known as the ‘box office’, which is the origin of the term we still use today.

Glass beads and pins, which may have come from actors’ costumes, were also unearthed along with drinking vessels and clay pipes, which are likely to have belonged to revelling theatregoers and actors.

For the moment, the excavated remains of the Curtain Theatre, which takes its name from Curtain Road, have been carefully covered over with a protective membrane and a special type of pH neutral sand, while construction of The Stage, a new £750m mixed-use development backed by a consortium led by Cain Hoy and designed by architects Perkins+Will, continues.

A display of the finds will sit alongside the theatre remains as part of a cultural and visitor centre at the heart of the completed development, which will also feature 33,000 sq ft of retail, over 200,000 sq ft of office space, more than 400 homes, and over an acre of vibrant public space including a performance area and a park.

Heather Knight, MOLA Senior Archaeologist, commented: “Finding evidence for one of the first stages that was specifically built for plays at the end of the dig was hugely exciting and significant. This exciting discovery could transform our understanding of the evolution of Elizabethan theatres.

“It also raises questions about the function of the theatre and the types of entertainment that might have been staged here. For example, did the unusual shape and layout of the Curtain stage influence the plays such as Henry V and Romeo and Juliet that he wrote before his company moved to the Globe with a different stage…

Viewing Greece: Cultural and Political Agency in the Medieval and Early Modern Mediterranean, edited by Sharon E. J. Gerstel, originated with our conference “Heaven and Earth: Perspectives on Greece’s Byzantium” which was convened in conjunction with exhibitions at the Getty museums in May 2014. The papers in this volume focus on the artistic legacy of Byzantine culture in Greece providing a foreground for the important role of this region.

St. Albans and the Markyate Psalter: Seeing and Reading in Twelfth-Century England, edited by Kristen Collins and Matthew Fisher, originated with our conference in February 2014. This conference was also associated with a Getty Museum exhibition and brought together an international group of scholars in a discussion about the intersections of art, literacy, and the readership of images in medieval England.

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