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Blue Heron Renaissance Choir Visits the Redfern

KEENE, N.H., 10/6/2010 - Keene State College’s Redfern Arts Center presents the Blue Heron Renaissance Choir, performing A Century of French Song on Wednesday, November 3, at 7:30 p.m. in the Alumni Recital Hall.

In addition, the Blue Heron Choir will conduct a free lecture/demonstration in the Alumni Recital Hall at 2 p.m. the same day. Ticket prices are $18 for the general public, $15 for senior citizens, $9 for youth 17 and younger, and $5 for Keene State students. For tickets, call the box office, 603-358-2168, or visit

Audiences are invited to come early and meet the Blue Heron Renaissance Choir before the show. These Meet-and-Greets with the artists are hosted by the Redfern and its staff. They will be held before each Visiting Artist’s performance throughout the year. They begin at 6:30 p.m.; light refreshments will be served.

Led by musical director Scott Metcalfe, the Blue Heron Renaissance Choir was founded in 1999 to celebrate and preserve the tradition of early European choral music. Their principal repertoire includes medieval English and Franco- Flemish polyphony, Spanish music between about 1500 and 1575, and neglected early 16th-century English music. The company’s first CD, featuring choral music by 15th-century composer Guillaume Du Fay, was released to great acclaim in 2007. The Choir’s performances have been described by The Boston Globe as “extraordinary … sensually rich, yet balanced and incandescent.”

The Blue Heron Choir’s performance at the Redfern will feature a sample of chansons from the 15th century, including a selection from the famous Chansonnier Cordiforme, an illustrated songbook from the 1470s. The show features five singers (Martin Near, Daniela Tosic, Jason McStoots, Aaron Sheehan, and Paul Guttry), accompanied by three instrumentalists (Laura Jeppesen, Tom Zajac, and Scott Metcalfe) playing violins, harps, recorders, and an assortment of medieval instruments.

A Century of French Song will feature work by many of medieval Europe’s most celebrated composers, including such continental musicians as Guillaume Du Fay, Gilles Binchois, Antoine Busnoys, and Johannes Ockeghem, as well as Englishmen Robert Morton and Walter Frye. This music, which was originally performed at banquets or private aristocratic functions, features a dazzling range of emotional tonalities, from vibrant comedy to heartbreaking tragedy.

Tickets and information are available at the Redfern Arts Center box office, 603-358-2168, or online at, where you can also view many video clips from the season’s Visiting Artists repertoire. Special memberships with many discounts and other benefits, including free tickets, are also available at the Redfern box office or online.

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