Alkemie (photo credit: June Collmer)

Courtly Songs & Dances from 15th-century France & Italy
Concert premiered on Sunday, March 21, 2021, and may be viewed through April 4, 2021.

Alkemie celebrates seven years of friendship with their most diverse program yet: dancing with choreographies old and new, rarely heard songs from the Loire Valley Chansonniers. This program includes three lively balli and a stately bassadanza choreographed by the fifteenth-century dancing master Guglielmo Ebreo da Pesaro. In the case of the balli, the choreographies and music (both attributed to Guglielmo) are preserved in his treatise De pratica seu arte tripudii; for the bassadanza Alessandrescha, following the traditional practice of composing a tenor line over which Niccolo improvises a cantus line. Other pieces of dance music were drawn from the treatises of Guglielmo’s predecessor Domenico da Piacenza and his colleague Antonio Cornazano, and two additional new compositions by Niccolo are presented. The vocal music was drawn from a group of beautifully illuminated fifteenth-century songbooks known as the Loire Valley chansonniers. Two pieces by the great Burgundian composer Antoine Busnois as well as a variety of equally compelling songs by lesser known and anonymous composers will also be performed.

Concert preview: