Collegium Musicum

The Collegium Musicium serves as both an introduction to "Early Music," loosely defined as Western classical and church music up to Bach; and as a performance group dedicated to this style of music. It is primarily a choral ensemble, but there are opportunities to learn and play on replicas of historical instruments for interested students. Some styles we explore include motets, Gregorian chant, madrigals, masses, chanson, and other Medieval and Renaissance delights. And once we master a style and thoroughly understand its historical context, we can get to work on thoughtfully subverting it. Recent past concert programs have included using juggling as a visual metaphor for the structure of polyphony; real-time crowd-sourcing of audience emotional response as a way of exploring how feelings have evolved across the centuries; historically ill-informed performance as a vector for understanding the modern "Historically Informed Performance" movement; and dirty songs. 

The group typically consists of undergraduates, graduate students, and community members of all ages. The ability to read music or having sung in a choir is a helpful though non-mandatory prerequisite, and because very few people are familiar with these styles in advance, all are welcome to participate and learn together. There are no exams or written assignments for undergraduates, but some individual practice outside of class time may be required, and there are typically one or two concerts each semester.

Finally, the human voice is the most personal and intimate instrument, and singing, especially around one's peers, can feel vulnerable and exposing. We look to embrace that as a diversion from the cold and brutal world of chemistry labs and internship interviews. 

Contact Roman Testroet, director, to schedule an audition.