Comments from Musica Antiqua's audiences


Peter Boyce, MIT, President, American Astron. Society 

"I would like to extend a word of appreciation to you for the delightful entertainment that you and Musica Antiqua provided. We received countless compliments from our members and we would like for you to know how enjoyable the occasion was for everyone. Clearly, you all put your hearts into every performance, and your audience certainly appreciated it."

James May, St.Olaf College

"Your performance at St. Olaf was magnificent and it generated an enthusiasm which is not commonly seen here."

Zoe, Carmelite Monastery, Ware, Herts, UK

"Wow!  Thank you so much for your CD.  It arrived this morning and is very, very much appreciated.  I'm looking forward to using Quam pulchra es for our celebrations and to listening in more leisure to the CD tonight.  I wanted to let you know immediately how grateful we are to you.  With thanks and prayer."

Ronald Stringer, Vice Pres. AACA

"Musica Antiqua did an outstanding job at our awards banquet. I can't ever remember when a group received a standing ovation like your group did. The members of the group were not only courteous to our guests, but genuinely friendly towards them. We will not hesitate to recommend Musica Antiqua to anyone."

from the Bluffs Arts Council

"One of the most outstanding, professional groups BAC has ever dealt with. Quality of presentations and rapport with audience is excellent; we are always proud to present Musica Antiqua, and we feel assured that each performance at the Renaissance Faire will be as enjoyable and educational as the others, no matter how tired and hot they become. There was always a standing-room only crowd gathered around their tent this year."

Hannah Mooney, Rossyln Chapel, Roslin, Scotland

"My name is Hannah Mooney, and I am a research intern at the Rosslyn Chapel in Roslin, Scotland.  Rosslyn Chapel is a beautiful medieval chapel full of unique stonework.  My research lately has been to identify the medieval musical instruments represented throughout the chapel.  The information on your Guide to Medieval and Renaissance Instruments page of your website has been very helpful in my research.  We are hoping to publish our findings in the chapel as well as on our website.  Would it be possible for us to use some of your images to show visitors what the instruments look like when they are not carved from stone? 
All of these images will be used for purely educational purposes, and you will be credited as the source.  Thank you!  Hannah Mooney Hannah Mooney Research Intern Rosslyn Chapel Trust Ltd, Roslin, Midlothian, EH25 9PU, Scotland."

Annabel Liu, writer for the Ames Tribune

Bridge"Music of the Middle Ages and Renaissance is alive and well in Ames. In fact, this week should have been designated Early Music Week. The Iowa State University Musica Antiqua, a unique group of musicians specializing in instrumental and vocal music of the 12th through 16th centuries...When the Antiqua played...the auditorium was filled a half hour before curtain time. People were sitting in the aisles, and the fire marshal was called. The concert was delayed for 10 minutes...The Antiqua instruments are all authentic replicas of medieval versions made to order and copied from museums by craftsmen in Germany, England, and this country... Even the costumes reflect the mixture of social classes. The stringed instrumentalists and vocalists are draped in resplendent, aristocratic satin or velvet robes, while the wind instrument players wear peasants' garb or the apparel of the strolling minstrels... Many of the Antiqua members can play four to five different instruments, and some can play as many as seven to eight...Thanks to the Antiqua, medieval and Renaissance music will never bite the dust."


Perry Fine Arts Association

"Very unique experience for people. Comments from those in attendance noted educational experience and interaction with performers extremely interesting and informative."

Amanda Earnest, International School of Uganda, Kampala, Uganda

"I am a music teacher.  I am originally from Nashville, TN, but have been teaching overseas for 5 years.  Recently in my grade 3 music class, we were studying the music of the medieval and renaissance periods.  Through a google search I came across your website.  It was a fantastic resource and my students LOVED exploring through it and learning about medieval and renaissance instruments.  I just wanted to send my extreme thank you from 8,000 miles away.  You are providing a unique and comprehensive opportunity to study the instruments of the medieval and renaissance periods and I thank you so much for making it available online.
I only request that you forward this message to the appropriate recipients and keep the website going so I can continue to use it year after year.  Many thanks from a music teacher, Amanda Earnest"

Dr. Aimee Beckmann-Collier, Drake University

"Many thanks for your splendid participation in the Madrigal Dinner. You were more fun than ever and you educated and enlivened our audiences in a particularly satisfying manner."

from the Burlington Hawk Eye

"It was a hand-down, thumbs up for those who enjoy music as well as for those who love learning, though sufficiently entertaining to please even the village idiot....Musica Antiqua's six members make merry of their work and infuse their exposition with humor."

Megan Ireland, Head of Music, After School Music Coordinator, AIS Saigon, 21 Pham Ngoc Thach, District 3 HCMC VIETNAM

"Hi!!  I'm an Australian music teacher living and working currently in Saigon, Vietnam. I have limited resources and I'm teaching a unit of work to year 9 and 10 (15 and 16 year olds) in order to tie in with their studies on Shakespeare in English.  So, I turned to the internet and I discovered your images and associated sounds for the renaissance instruments and I almost cried with joy to discover them, because teaching this style of music to this age group is tough - tough to make it interesting for them unless they're seriously into some kind of classical music and most of them like rap or contemporary.  I know they will totally love your website and it means they will listen to the music more attentively after being able to identify pictures and sounds. THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!!!
I wonder where you found such beautifully crafted instruments? Did this group of performers make them?  If so, I'm wondering if it might be possible to make some here so we could use them, which would be one step better than your website. Also, if you are ever touring in Vietnam, please email me as we would pay you to perform for our school.  We could probably not afford to bring you here as we are only a young school, but perhaps in the future, we could team up with the other schools and bring you out here if you are available for this kind of tour. With many thanks, Megan"

from William Penn College

"The performance was very high in variety of aural as well as visual interest. Also high in educational content. The audience was delighted to participate as well as listen. We enjoyed their performance so much that we had them return to entertain at our Christmas banquet. Outstanding!"

from Dennis Wendell, ISU Scholarship Musicales

"How can I begin to thank you for providing such a rousing and wildly successful performance at Theatre Wendell last week?  My dream has always been to host the group in my home, and now that has been accomplished and made extra special by coinciding with my 10th Scholarship Musicale.  Besides the monetary success, the evening was a brilliant combination of entertainment and musical education.  Had I known the Herculean effort required to transport and set up your extensive collection of instruments, I would never have made the proposition.  Anyway, you upheld the age-old tradition of "on with the show" and dazzled a full house.  Thanks again!"

Karen DeMol,  Chair, Dordt College Music Department

"Thanks so much for the outstanding program that Musica Antiqua presented here....The evening was a success in so many ways. I am so impressed with how much you had going in one concert: fine music superbly performed, an ability to "connect" with the audience and draw it into the music, verbal program notes that included repartee for those who wish to be entertained, musical information for the novice, and scholarly comments for the musicians. The success of your presentation was well evident in the response of the audience during the concert and in the large number of people who came to the stage afterwards. You were most generous with us, both in allowing us to handle the instruments and in chatting with us a whole hour after the concert."

Arlene Johnson, Professional Secretaries International

"When I read that Musica Antiqua was to be our after-dinner entertainment at the...Conference..., I thought that it would be something such as I had never seen before and would be interesting. I'll be the first to admit that my guesses are not always correct, however, in this case my guess was underwhelmingly weak. The performance by your group was marvelous. The only thing that would have made your presentation better was to have had my husband enjoy it with me."

Doug Kirk, Tribune Reviewer

"Saturday night a near-capacity crowd in Fisher Theater was treated by the Iowa State University Musica Antiqua. The program provided a good cross section of sixteenth century musical genres and, arrayed in their Renaissance-style costumes, the group gave the audience a colorful idea of what it would be like to live and hear the popular music at the time...Another instrumental sound which I feel was excellent was the krummhorn playing. Anyone who has ever attempted these instruments knows how treacherous they are, especially for tuning in consorts. The moresca, Chichilichi, played from memory by three krummhornists standing at the front of the stage, represented the best krummhorn playing I have heard anywhere in the world...Jean Thomas once again proved herself a master interpreter of early music with her sensitive and very flexible performance of these difficult works..Musica Antiqua is certainly a musical ensemble of major importance in the Midwest, composed of artists who deserve to be known much more widely."

Dr. John Kelly, Boone Public Schools

"It was a pleasure to have such talented musicians and caring educators in our school district. I also hope that students in the future may be so fortunate as to have your group return for an encore."

Richard Coulter, Daily Staff Writer

"Musica Antiqua, Iowa State's early music group, have managed through excellence and creativity to create a refreshingly original formula that is truly accessible to the audience, yet never compromises on artistic worth. The group of 13, who perform on period instruments, gave a performance of Middle Age and Renaissance music covering both instrumental works and song. Unlike many concerts, however, the Antiqua avoided a serious and stale approach and produced surprise after surprise. The Antiqua players and singers are clearly well-trained and comfortable with instruments and music. I am no expert on the performance of Renaissance music, but the smoothness and purity of the compositions was evident through the expressive and proficient technique of the group. The overall impression of this group is very positive. They bring an authentic flavor to a wonderful period of music that is not nearly heard enough."

John Van Ast, Iowa Curriculum Assistance System

"The participants at your delightful June 13 evening of music, dancing, humor, singing, and history activities were appreciative of your group's talents. Your ability to involve us during the evening was most successful. On behalf of the MAII board, I extend to you their gratitude. Thank you for making our evening a memorable one. "

Organetto tapestry