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Texas Early Music Project
13915 Burnet Road, Suite 402 
Austin, TX 78728
(512) 377-6961

For ticket and concert venue inquiries, email the Box Office

TEMP is a performing ensemble and not a presenting organization or an agency. Please do not contact TEMP about hosting other early music groups.
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13915 Burnet Road, Suite 402
Austin, TX 78728
United States

(512) 377-6961

Founded in 1987 by Daniel Johnson, the Texas Early Music Project is dedicated to preserving and advancing the art of Medieval, Renaissance, Baroque, and early Classical music through performance, recordings, and educational outreach. 

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Explore more than 700 years of musical transformation

Filtering by Tag: An Early Christmas

I'll be thanking you-oo-oo-oo*

Danny Johnson

So, just so you know, we are thankful all year long: thankful that we have audience members, both long-term and newly-found, who come to our playful-yet-virtuosic concerts like the November production of Pimpinone. We are thankful for the chance to present beautiful/humorous/melancholic music like the ‘Complaints’ concert that we performed in Austin last spring and in college Station in late October. We are thankful for the adventurous amateur and semi-pro musicians who joined us at the Texas Toot workshop last summer and this last weekend led by professionals from around the nation.

We are thankful for donors like the Fifth Age of Man Foundation, which will be sponsoring the upcoming Christmas concert (see deets below!), and we are thankful for donors who help to keep us going on a daily basis with contributions from $10 to $10,000!

We hope you all have a lovely, peaceful, heart-warming, multilicious Thanksgiving, and we hope to see you all at our upcoming Early Christmas concerts. We will have our new Christmas cd ready for you, gathered from our 2016 and 2017 Early Christmas concerts. For now, enjoy these audio teasers from our earlier Christmas CDs: Gaudete, Noël, Swete was the Songe, and Stella splendens.

Breaking news! We have a NEW Christmas CD!

Photo credit: Kudos Kitchen by Renée

Photo credit: Kudos Kitchen by Renée

And now, I think I hear a pumpkin pie calling my name…
-Danny

*Curious about the title of this post? Here’s the reference: https://bit.ly/2Q8UvBi


An Early Christmas

Friday, December 7, 2018, at  7:30 pm
St. John's United Methodist, 2140 Allandale Road
Saturday, December 8, 2018, at 
 7:30 pm
First English Lutheran Church, 3001 Whitis Avenue
Sunday, December 9, 2018, 3:00 pm

First Presbyterian Church, 8001 Mesa Drive, Austin, TX

Admission $30 general; $25 seniors (60+); $5 students (at the door only)
Tickets available in advance online or by cash, check, or credit card at the door.

Take advantage of preferred seating and other perks by sponsoring a concert!

For more information, call 512-377-6961 and leave a message,
or email info@early-music.org.

Join Texas Early Music Project for its annual multilicious feast of Christmas music through the ages. With sweet medieval lullabies and joyous English and French carols, magnificent motets from Germany, dulcet Celtic cradle-songs and exuberant folk-tunes, and more, we celebrate this season of expectation and rebirth, along with different cultures encompassing more than 700 years of humanity's hope, love, and joy.  TEMP puts its distinctive stamp on the intangible essence and passion of Christmas with arrangements for solo voices, small chorus, harps, violin, flute, mandolin, viols, and lute.

Brett Barnes, Cayla CardiffJeffrey Jones-RagonaDavid LopezJenny Houghton, and Jenifer Thyssen are featured soloists, and acclaimed harpists Therese Honey and Elaine Barber are featured as special guests.

Join us for a splended and enriching program. With more than 700 years of creativity and beauty, this music is sure to delight your ears and warm your heart.

And you can use our new word: multilicous!

Click on the image above to      buy tickets now     !

Click on the image above to buy tickets now!

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The post-Thanksgiving, post-Blagh Fridaegh blog

Danny Johnson

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Yes, I indeed missed my opportunity to write a blog last Friday and call it Blog Friday, but it just couldn't be helped. Here we go, though: The Early Christmas concert is just less than two weeks away. Say that slooooowly and try to avoid hyperventilating. It hasn't worked for me; maybe it will for you. 

Our Christmas concerts offer a multiplicity of delicious music from diverse styles from diverse traditions and diverse musical eras. The upcoming one (in just less than two weeks away—did I mention that?) stays in that mold with some new elements and some that we haven't performed in so long, they seem like they're new! In honor of all this diversity of style, etc., we're using a new word to describe the concert: Multilicious! Feel free to use it. Give us credit.

Read the full program description and listen to audio teasers below. 

We hope to see you at one of our multilicious Early Christmas concerts! Buy tickets now because they often sell out! 

-Danny

 
 

An Early Christmas

7:00 pm, Friday, December 8, 2017
First English Lutheran Church, 3001 Whitis Ave., Austin, TX

 7:00 pm, Saturday, December 9, 2017
First English Lutheran Church, 3001 Whitis Ave., Austin, TX

3:00 pm, Sunday, December 10, 2017
First Presbyterian Church, 8001 Mesa Drive, Austin, TX

Admission $30 general; $25 seniors (60+); $5 students (at the door only)
Tickets available in advance online or by cash, check, or credit card at the door.

For more information, call 512-377-6961 and leave a message,
or email
info@early-music.org.

Join Texas Early Music Project for a multilicious feast of Christmas music through the ages. People in different cultures across the centuries have celebrated this season of expectation and rebirth with sweet Dutch lullabies and joyous English carols, rousing Spanish villancicos and dulcet French noëls, Celtic cradle-songs and exuberant folk-tunes.

We’ve chosen pieces ranging from Medieval Spain and England to Baroque France and Germany and beyond, encompassing more than 500 years of humanity’s hope, love, and joy. TEMP puts its distinctive stamp on the intangible essence and passion of Christmas, with arrangements for solo voices, small chorus, harp, violin, flute, mandolin, viols, and lute.

Enjoy these audio teasers from our CDs Gaudete: An Early Christmas and Swete was the Songe:

Enjoy more selections from Noël: An Early Christmas and Stella splendens: An Early Music Christmas.

Brett Barnes, Cayla Cardiff, Jeffrey Jones-Ragona, Stephanie Prewitt, Meredith Ruduski, and Jenifer Thyssen are featured soloists, and nationally acclaimed historical harpist Therese Honey joins TEMP's troupe of solo voices, small chorus, violin, flute, mandolin, viols, and lute.

Join Texas Early Music Project for a splendid and enriching evening of music. Encompassing 500 years of festive creativity and beauty, this music is sure to delight your ears and warm your heart. And you can use our new word, multilicious!

Click on the image above to      buy tickets now     !

Click on the image above to buy tickets now!

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The *Less-Early* Early Christmas from TEMP

Danny Johnson

Tune in to KMFA 89.5 FM on Thurs. 12-15-16 at 6pm!

Tune in to KMFA 89.5 FM on Thurs. 12-15-16 at 6pm!

I always feel big pangs of nostalgia when our Christmas concerts end; we have so much to accomplish in so few days, it's very bonding (in the good way, not the oh-my-gosh-the-zombies-are-here way) and we're always sad when it's over.

Sara Schneider, host of Ancient Voices, KMFA 89.5 FM

Sara Schneider, host of Ancient Voices, KMFA 89.5 FM

Except that we all have so many other gigs'o'the season, we can't linger in that sentimental feeling. And these last few days I've stayed right in the concert mode by working with KMFA to present a one hour version of the concert for their Listen Local series. (Yes, 12 minutes of wonderful music had to be left behind due to time constraints.) So if you didn't get to come to the concerts or if you would just like to revisit them, then listen this Thursday, December 15, at 6pm to 89.5 FM or catch it on the interwebs at www.kmfa.org. Sara Schneider will be your M.C. for the program, so you know she'll have the best hits lined up!


Download the TEMP An Early Christmas program notes to follow along while listening!

Joyeux Noël!
-Danny

Join us for our next concert, Feb. 18 & 19, 2017!

Join us for our next concert, Feb. 18 & 19, 2017!

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Today is the first day...

Danny Johnson

 
 

of TEMP's "Year of Christmas," in which we we have a different blog post daily about some aspect of Christmas/music/life through December 25, 2017. Yes, a whole year of musical jokes and little-known-facts along with suitable graphics and musical links. Hold on, my phone is ringing. In the meantime, try to come up with suitable lyrics for the 316th day of Christmas—I'm kind of stuck on that one . . .

Hmmm—according to our webscribe and also our graphics guy, there will, in fact, "not" be a year of Christmas with a daily blog/graphics/jokes/links! And they ’splained it to me real well why, in fact, there will not be a year of Christmas with a daily blog/graphics jokes/links.

So, maybe the best thing is just for us all to treat the rest of the year like we do the Christmas season: Be kind and thoughtful and helpful and loving. And go to lots of TEMP concerts! 

 

 

On the 388th day of Christmas, my true love gave to me . . . 

-Danny

 
 

An Early Christmas

Friday, December 9, 2016 at 8PM
First English Lutheran Church, 3001 Whitis Avenue

Saturday December 10, 2016 at 8PM
First English Lutheran Church, 3001 Whitis Avenue

Sunday, December 11, 2016 at 3PM
First Presbyterian Church, 8001 Mesa Drive

Admission $30 general; $25 seniors (60+); $5 students (at the door only)
Tickets available in advance online or by cash, check, or credit card at the door.

For more information, call 512-377-6961 and leave a message,
or email info@early-music.org.

It’s time for another Early Christmas! We explore music and the intangible essence of Christmas from the cultural capitals of Europe from the 13th through 18th centuries. TEMP puts its unique stamp on joyful carols and lullabies from Western Europe and the British Isles, with arrangements for solo voices, small chorus, harp, violin, flute, mandolin, viols, and lute.

The familiar theme of the Nativity from the shepherds’ perspective figures prominently in most early music Christmas repertoire, as does the motif of Mother and Child. We present several works with this focus, including our original arrangement of two Nativity pastorals from 1684 by Marc-Antoine Charpentier and the choral masterpiece for 8 parts, Nesciens mater, by French composer Jean Mouton.

There are lively works from Spain, thoughtful, pensive works from France, and of course, a little taste of Celtic and English influences! Our popular versions of the Carol for St. Stephen’s Day and Gaudete! are featured this year, as well as other Celtic favorites.

Nationally acclaimed historical harpist Therese Honey joins TEMP's troupe of soloists, choir and chamber orchestra.

Enjoy this audio teaser from our CD Noël: An Early Christmas:

Enjoy more audio samples from our other Christmas CDs: Stella splendens and Swete was the Songe.

Join Texas Early Music Project for a splendid and enriching evening of music. Encompassing six hundred years of festive creativity and beauty, this music is sure to delight your ears and warm your heart.

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On the 12th Day of Christmas: Parting is such sweet sorrow; time for hot chocolate!

Danny Johnson

 
 

A Loth to depart was the common term for a song sung, or a tune played, on taking leave of friends in Elizabethan times. The popular tune, of unknown origin, was treated to a number of settings, both vocal and instrumental, and the tune and text were referred to in a number of plays in the 17th century. In modern times, the New York-based early music group Ex Umbris sang an arrangement of Loath to depart by Grant Herreid at the end of their performances. Our friend and colleague Tom Zajac was a co-founder of Ex Umbris; about thirty musicians and two hundred congregants sang and played Loath to depart for Tom at his memorial service in New York City, November 6, 2015. We are including Loath to depart near the end of the concert as a tribute to Tom and also as a reminder that we love the Christmas concert and are loath that it's coming to a close!

c. 1600 Cambridge University MS Dd.2.11 fol 9 (lute tab).

c. 1600 Cambridge University MS Dd.2.11 fol 9 (lute tab).

Sing with thy mouth, sing with thy heart,
Like faithful friends, sing Loath to depart;
Though friends together may not always remain,
Yet Loath to depart sing once again.

And, I’m loath to say, we are the end of our 12 Days of Christmas factoid per day thing; it has been fun. We think you’ll enjoy the concerts even more, of course.

Please join us at An Early Christmas. www.early-music.org

Click to buy tickets to our Christmas concerts on Dec. 11, 12, & 13!

Click to buy tickets to our Christmas concerts on Dec. 11, 12, & 13!

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On the 11th Day of Early Christmas: A Favorite Through the Centuries

Danny Johnson

 
 

And here we are: It’s time to talk about the Lady Greensleeves, beloved cousin to the beloved Mr. Green Jeans, from “Captain Kangaroo.” They made popular the immortal hit, It’s not easy being green. Raise your hands if you believe this.

The earliest source of the song we know as Greensleeves was a broadside ballad by Richard Jones in 1580; several more versions appeared shortly, with variants of title and text. There are references to the song in Shakespeare’s The Merry Wives of Windsor and, by the end of the 17th century, the song had developed many variants in melody, harmony, and meter in versions by William Cobbold, John Playford, and others. Of course, the popular version for Christmas is What Child is This with lyrics by William Dix written around 1865. Our version is based around the mid-17th century version, The old yeare now away is fled and variations by Playford and Cobbold. Here is a excerpt of the song from our CD Stella splenends: An Early Music Christmas:

There are modern versions/variations by performers as varied as Jacques Brel, Leonard Cohen, Elvis Presley, Alvin and the Chipmunks, and…well, lots more.

An Early Christmas in 2 days. In Austin.
Alas, my love: Be there!

Click to buy tickets for our Christmas concerts on Dec. 11, 12, & 13!

Click to buy tickets for our Christmas concerts on Dec. 11, 12, & 13!

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On the Tenth Day of Early Christmas We Went to Ireland Again. A Little.

Danny Johnson

 
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This has become one of the most popular of the pieces we do an a regular basis; we haven’t done it since 2013 so here it comes again with slightly newly arranged parts…

It is known as The Enniscorthy Christmas Carol to much of the world except that when it was first printed in the Oxford Book of Carols in 1928 it was called The Wexford Carol. Things get really confusing in the world of traditional / aurally transmitted music sometimes. (Shhh. It might also be that the text is of English origin; I think I would be careful where I spread such rumors, though.) The melody is indeed of traditional Irish origin and is probably not very old: mid-19th century, maybe? Our arrangement goes through stages: from quietly meditative to a sort of early 19th century string quartet / or trio with voice style  to a reel with harp, flute, mandolin, violin, continuo, and voice. Really fun.

But the real reason we’re talking about this today is that I first arranged it in 2010 for Cayla Cardiff to sing and, man, does she ever sing the ifreann out of it! Here's a teaser audio from our CD Swete was the Songe:

As coincidence would have it, today is Cayla's birthday! Wish her  Lá breithe shona duit and come hear her sing!

In 3 more days. TEMP: An Early Christmas.

Click to buy tickets to our Christmas concerts on Dec. 11, 12, & 13!

Click to buy tickets to our Christmas concerts on Dec. 11, 12, & 13!

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On the 9th Day of Early Christmas my Director Gave to Meee: A Weather Forecast?

Danny Johnson

 
 

All hail to the days that merit more praise
Than all the rest of the year…

Loreena McKennitt sings it; and it’s on virtually every Anglophile Christmas or Solstice or Winter-related recording. I know of no reason we shouldn’t do it also! This traditional tune, first known as When Phoebus did rest, was set and arranged by John Playford for his country dance primer, The English Dancing Master, in 1651. Related versions of it are also found in the Samuel Pepys collection of broadsides under the title A pleasant Countrey new ditty: Merrily shewing how To drive the cold winter away and a version is also found in d'Urfey's multi-volume set Wit and Mirth, or Pills to Purge Melancholy. It remains one of the more popular English ballads in its several incarnations.

December is seene apparel’d in greene
And January, fresh as May…

Considering where we live, I for one am not so eager to drive the cold winter away, though I don’t have to deal with 6-foot snow-storms, either. At any rate, it’s a great song, David Lopez sounds wonderful in his solo verse (listen to the audio teaser below!), the choral parts are fresh, playful, and a little innovative, and evocative visions of hot chocolate and hot cider and maybe a hot toddy or two prevail!

The old and young doth carol this song,
To drive the cold winter away.

This song is also available on our CD Swete was the Songe: An Early Music Christmas in Northern Europe and the British Isles.

Drive the Cold Winter Away, just not too quickly, ok?

TEMP: An Early Christmas. In 4 Days.

It’s still early in the week, but the Friday forecast is 79F. In Austin. We must have some cold winter before we can drive it away, no? 

Click to buy tickets for our Christmas concerts on Dec. 11, 12, & 13!

Click to buy tickets for our Christmas concerts on Dec. 11, 12, & 13!

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