This hour on Harmonia, we’re donning our party hats and pulling out the balloons and streamers, to celebrate our 25th birthday! The very first episode of Harmonia aired on October 10th, 1991, and we’ve been bringing you the best of medieval, renaissance and baroque music ever since.
We heard Henry Purcell’s “Strike the Viol,” performed by the Early Music Consort of London, under the direction of David Munrow.
This hour on Harmonia, we’re celebrating a very important birthday – our own! The very first episode of Harmonia aired on October 10th, 1991, and we’ve been bringing you the best of medieval, renaissance and baroque music ever since. We’re taking a trip down memory lane this week, and listening back to material from some of our earliest episodes! This segment features material from Program #1, “Star of the Morning,” a program about the Cantigas de Santa Maria.
Harmonia’s national syndication began in 1995, with more than eighty stations signing on in the first week alone! Cary Boyce, who was WFIU’s Marketing Director at the time, Christina Kuzmych, the Station Manager, and I – along with a number of courageous volunteers – put the first round of press kits together by hand, working late into the night for several days. We’re still getting the glue from the glue sticks out of our hair! By 2000, the show was being carried by more than a hundred and fifty stations nationwide.
This segment features material from Program #30, an interview with Indiana University Early Music Institute founder Tom Binkley.
We’re listening back to material from some of our earliest episodes this week on Harmonia, as we celebrate twenty-five years. Thanks for joining us!
In 1991, I was incredibly excited about the prospect of creating an early music radio program. I remember telling Tom Binkley at the Early Music Institute that I had been given this opportunity, but that I was worried about juggling the radio show with my graduate studies. He was very enthusiastic, and I remember vividly what he said to me: “Do it! You should just do it! You never know where it might lead.” Never in my wildest dreams did I imagine that it would still be running twenty-five years later, or that it would have reached such a wide audience. I am incredibly grateful, not only to WFIU for giving me the opportunity, but also to the many listeners who have faithfully supported the show for all these years.
This segment features material from Program #65, a show about the female troubadours known as the trobairitz.
We’ve been celebrating our 25th birthday this week on Harmonia, by listening back to material from some of our earliest episodes. Whether this is your first time hearing Harmonia or you’ve been with us for 25 years, thanks for listening!
Purcell: Birthday Odes for Queen Mary
On our featured release this week, we’re returning to the music of an ensemble that has been featured on Harmonia many, many times over the years – David Munrow’s pioneering group, the Early Music Consort of London. The ensemble’s recording of two of the handful of birthday odes that Henry Purcell wrote for Queen Mary was first released in 1976, fifteen years before Harmonia made its 1991 debut, which we’re celebrating on this special birthday edition of Harmonia.
We heard music from “Come, Ye Sons of Art,” Henry Purcell’s 1694 birthday ode for Queen Mary, performed by singers and instrumentalists of the Early Music Consort of London, under the direction of David Munrow.
Break and theme music
:30, Music of the Crusades, The Early Music Consort of London, Decca 1991, Tr. 1 La Quinte estampie real (excerpt of 2:15)
:60, Music of the Crusades, The Early Music Consort of London, Decca 1991, Tr. 17 La Tierche estampie real (excerpt of 2:06)
:30, Music of the Crusades, The Early Music Consort of London, Decca 1991, Tr. 6 Danse real (excerpt of 1:05)
Theme: Danse Royale, Ensemble Alcatraz, Elektra Nonesuch 79240-2 1992 B000005J0B, Tr. 12 La Prime Estampie Royal
The writer for this edition of Harmonia were Elizabeth Clark and Angela Mariani.
Learn more about recent early music CDs on the Harmonia Early Music Podcast. You can subscribe on iTunes or at harmonia early music dot org.