Critic’s Choice

Tue Jan 10, 2017 at 2:51 pm

By Lawrence A. Johnson

The Newberry Consort

With the Chicago Symphony Orchestra on an extended European tour this month, it’s a good opportunity to spotlight some of the smaller ensembles that often labor in the shadows of CSO and Lyric Opera.

In addition to the ongoing Winter Chamber Music Festival, this weekend offers a choice program by the Newberry Consort. No early music group in the city blends serious scholarship with such consistently lively and enjoyable performances. Currently marking its 30th anniversary season, the Consort will feature the rarely heard music of Oswald von Wolkenstein. The music of the peripatetic count, created at a transitional stage of Renaissance music, will likely prove an intriguing discovery.

Adding to the pleasures, this program will welcome back two former Newberry Consort members, Drew Minter and founding director Mary Springfels, to join in the festivities.

Performances are 8 p.m. Friday at Ruggles Hall at the Newberry Library; 8 p.m. Saturday at the Logan Center in Hyde Park; and 3 p.m. Sunday at Galvin Recital Hall in Evanston.

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