The Age of Enlightenment comes to life when the Academy of Early Music presents Eya. Specialists in the interpretation of medieval music, Eya and its three female vocalists will perform their concert program, Florence: Music in the Cultural Crucible, Friday in Bloomfield Hills and Saturday in Ann Arbor.
Eya is an award-winning vocal ensemble based in Washington, DC specializing in the interpretation of medieval music for women’s voices. Eya, pronounced “EH-yah,” is an exclamation of joy in Latin. Eya’s members are Allison Mondel, soprano and director; Kristen Dubenion-Smith, mezzo-soprano; and Crossley Hawn, soprano.
Performance on Friday, Jan. 10 is at the Congregational Church of Birmingham in Bloomfield Hills.
The Saturday, Jan. 11 performance is St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in Ann Arbor.
Inspired by the absurd and extravagant richness of the Florentine cultural landscape, Eya explores the varied forms of vocal music from several generations of composers popular in Renaissance Florence. The musical landscape of renaissance Florence reveals a splendid symbiosis of contrasting elements: sacred and secular, foreign and native, highborn and humble. These elements nurtured the development of an unusually vibrant cultural climate within the relatively small confines of a magnificent Italian city. Eya traces these coexisting elements within the cultural and social fabric of Florence from the trecento (late 14th century) through the late 16th century. Each part of the program begins with a medieval chant from a local confraternity (lay order) and further explores the varied forms of vocal music that define this rich cultural moment, including lauda (sacred songs in Italian), several generations of the wildly popular Franco-Flemish composers (DuFay, Isaac, Agricola), and works by native Francesco de Layolle composing in the style of the Burgundians.
The Congregational Church of Birmingham is located at 1000 Cranbrook Road, Bloomfield Hills.
St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church is located at 306 N. Division Street, Ann Arbor.
In the image above FROM LEFT TO RIGHT:
Allison Mondel, soprano and director
Kristen Dubenion-Smith, mezzo-soprano
Crossley Hawn, soprano
PHOTO CREDIT: Anthony Thompson