October 19-21, 2018

Will Kemp Returns: a Jigs Revival

Featuring Steve Player with violin band, lute and guitar, pipe and tabor, bagpipe and costumes by Meriem Bahri.
Pre-concert lecture 1/2 hour prior to the performance. Doors open 45 minutes prior to the concert.

OCTOBER 19, 8 pm Ruggles Hall – doors open 7:15 pm
Newberry Library, 60 W Walton St, Chicago, IL 60610

OCTOBER 20, 8 pm International House – doors open 7:15 pm
The University of Chicago, 1414 E 59th St, Chicago, IL 60637

OCTOBER 21, 3 pm Galvin Recital Hall – doors open 2:15 pm
Northwestern University Campus, 70 Arts Cir Dr, Evanston, IL 60208

Click on a photo to learn more about the artist.  Want to see who is performing in each of our shows?  Click on the concert title to view. You can do the same with instrumentalists and vocalists!
Brandi Berry Benson

Brandi Berry Benson

Violinist and 3Arts awardee Brandi Berry Benson, whose “four-string acrobatics” and “indispensable skill” (TimeOut Chicago) have been praised as “alert [and] outstanding” (Chicago Classical Review), as her “riffs.. powered by a flashing blur of bow arm, [as they] rolled out with irresistible glee” (Washington Post).

Brandon J. Acker

Brandon J. Acker is a classical guitarist, recording engineer and specialist in early plucked instruments. 

Corey Shotwell

Tenor Corey Shotwell, whose voice has been praised for its “light, sweet beauty,”(Bay Area Reporter) is particularly celebrated for his performance of music from the 17th and 18th centuries.

Dan Meyers

A versatile multi instrumentalist, Dan Meyers has developed a reputation as a flexible and engaging performer of both classical and folk music; his credits range from premieres of avant-garde chamber music, to headlining a concert series in honor of Pete Seeger at the Newport Folk Festival, to playing Renaissance instruments on Broadway as part of the “band” for the Shakespeare’s Globe productions of Twelfth Night and Richard III.

David Douglass

Although the bowed string instruments most overwhelmingly associated with the Renaissance period are the various viols (particularly the viola da gamba), David Douglass became interested in the use of his instrument during that period.

Ellen Hargis

Soprano Ellen Hargis is one of America’s premier early music singers, specializing in repertoire ranging from ballads to opera and oratorio.

Eric Miranda

Eric Miranda’s varied singing career spans two decades and has included solo appearances at Orchestra Hall, at the Ravinia Festival, and in Millennium Park with the Grant Park Symphony Chorus.

Jeremy David Ward

As a player of bass instruments, Jeremy David Ward specializes in playing well with others. Jeremy delights in crafting foundations on which an ensemble can thrive.
Meriem Bahri

Meriem Bahri

Meriem Bahri is a French and Tunisian costume designer praised by the press for her « gorgeous and evocative », « spectacular » and « sumptuous array of period-perfect » costumes (New York Times, Wall Street Journal, Chicago Tribune, respectively). After completing a PhD in science (2010, Université de Lille), she turned definitely to her great passion for costumes when she moved to Chicago.
Steven Player

Steven Player

Steve Player, dancer, player and general handyman. Continues to perform with interesting ensembles in Europe and the USA in projects that combine multi talented individuals. Since his last visit to Chicago with The Newberry Consort and the “Jigs” programme he has toured the US with Norway’s Barokksolistene and their Alehouse Session programme, exploring the music and dance that flourished in England in the 17th century under the Puritans, when all fun was banned.
Tim Macdonald

Tim Macdonald

​Praised for his “athletic” and “impressive and stylistically Scottish playing” (Dr. John Turner & Dr. Melinda Crawford), Tim Macdonald is a regular performer, scholar, composer, and teacher of early Scottish fiddle music.

The skinny on broadside ballads

In our upcoming production, “Will Kemp Returns! A Jigs Revival,” we’ll present ballads “in the broadside tradition.” But what is the broadside tradition? In today’s lingo, a ballad is a slow, sad song, maybe with romantic undertones, like something by Whitney Houston...

The Research Behind ‘Will Kemp Returns!’

The Newberry Consort welcomes back British actor, dancer, and guitarist Steve Player to portray Will Kemp, “Shakespeare’s clown.” Two years ago we ventured into this repertoire with our first staged production, presenting three full jigs plus some dancing on our...

The instruments of the Elizabethan stage

In “Will Kemp Returns! A Jigs Revival,” we’re taking you to Elizabethan England, playing music that you might’ve heard in a play by Shakespeare or on the streets of Renaissance London. To help us travel back in time, we’ve invited Renaissance music expert Dan Meyers...

Who Was Will Kemp?

Our 2018-19 season opener is “Will Kemp Returns! A Jigs Revival.” But who was Will Kemp? Will Kemp was a real man — a professional clown and comedic actor in Elizabethan England. Kemp (also known as Kempe), is best-known as one of the original members of Shakespeare’s...

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