minstrel: Pertaining to Guillaume de Machaut

Christopher Gregory (Richard Crowder) krummhorn at hotmail.com
Wed Apr 19 16:18:49 PDT 2000


I have a new CD of music by Guillaume de Machaut, who was born in ca. 1300
and died in 1370.  (Wow, imagine living to see more than half of the Hundred
Year's War!)  Most of his music is beautiful polyphony, which is sad because
my vocal chords are monophonic!  First question: how interested are people
in period bardic circles in hearing Old French?  I have heard some say that
it might be just too dull for a majority of listeners, but I have also heard
that it would be fabulous to hear something in the original language.  And
translating the Old French poetically to english would just loose so much of
the emotion and rhyme that Machaut put in (he was after all a poet who
happened to put his words to music that he also wrote.)
My second question, which is more ambitious, is this:  I am going to
Pennsic, and I am wondering if anyone would like to get together and learn
to sing some French 14th and 15th C. polyphonic music.  Not just Machaut,
but Dufay, Deprez, and others.  Secular and Sacred.  I don't know if we'd
perform for other people, but just learning these would be good for starting
a vocal group back at your home barony/shire/canton, one which performs
exclusively period music, and could do stuff for courts and official
functions.

Okay, I can't figure out how to end, so I will just end.
Thanks,
Richard Crowder of Burnham


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