St. Benedict’s Rule of hospitality is theme of March 16 show

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February 26, 2018

Rose EnsembleOver five centuries of music exploring St. Benedict’s Rule of unconditional hospitality will be featured in an original program presented by the Rose Ensemble at 8 p.m. Friday, March 16, at the Great Hall, Saint John’s University.

The performance is part of the Fine Arts Series at the College of Saint Benedict and SJU.

The program was researched and created by Jordan Sramek, the Rose Ensemble’s founder and artistic director. In celebration of Women’s History Month, the group will highlight music by Hildegard von Bingen (1098-1179), Caterina Assandra (1590-1618) and Chiara Margarita Cozzolani (1602-1678), as well as a new work honoring St. Scholastica by Minnesota composer Abbie Betinis.

Sramek studied early vocal performance and harpsichord at the College of St. Scholastica in Duluth, which recently awarded him a Doctor of Humane Letters. He is highly respected for his meticulous research of music rarely heard in the concert hall and has championed vocal repertoire from Renaissance Poland, medieval Bohemia, Baroque Malta, Sweden, Mexico and Bolivia, as well as 19th-century Hawaii.

The Rose Ensemble has achieved an international reputation as a premiere American early music ensemble. Each performance illuminates centuries of rarely heard repertoire, bringing to audiences research from the world’s manuscript libraries and a fresh perspective on history, culture, politics and spirituality from around the globe.

The Rose Ensemble has produced 10 critically acclaimed recordings and a diverse selection of concert programs. The group has thrilled audiences across the U.S. and Europe, with a repertoire spanning 1,000 years and over 25 languages.

In addition to the performance, the Hill Museum and Manuscript Library (HMML) will offer two intimate pre-performance programs at 6 p.m. Friday, March 16.

“The Benedictine Scriptorium – Ancient and New” will be presented by Tim Ternes, director of The Saint John’s Bible. In the Middle Ages, Benedictine monasteries were centers of culture learning which kept the tradition of the written word alive for the whole world. For decades, scholars have speculated about the processes and challenges involved in creating a great manuscript. This presentation gives new insights into The Saint John’s Bible in the context of giant medieval Bibles.

The second program is “Benedictines and Building Community Through Books,” presented by Matthew Heintzelman, curator for the Austria/Germany Study Center and curator for rare books and manuscript at HMML. Through the ages, Benedictines have been associated with books through reading, copying, collecting and disseminating. This session will provide an opportunity to experience a selection of these books, dating from the Middle Ages and Early Modern Period. The session will also consider how books bring together and reinforce community, prompting us to look at our world in new ways.

The Rose Ensemble will conduct a residency at CSB and SJU from March 13-16. Collaborating with the Benedictine Institute, the group will perform an audio divina, based on the Benedictine tradition of Lecto Divina, open to the public at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, March 15, at Emmaus Hall Chapel, SJU.

Tickets for the March 16 performance only are $28 for adults, $25 for seniors, $21 for CSB/SJU faculty and staff, $15 for youth and students and $10 for CSB and SJU students.

Tickets for the performance and one session are $58 for adults, $55 for seniors, $51 for CSB/SJU faculty and staff, $45 for youth and students and $40 for CSB and SJU students. The sessions, which last approximately one hour and are limited to 25 attendees per event (ages 15 and up), include appetizers and a glass of wine (ages 21 and older). Please designate what session you wish to attend when ordering tickets.

For tickets, call the Benedicta Arts Center Box Office at 320-363-5777 or order online.

The activity is made possible in part by the voters of Minnesota through a Minnesota State Arts Board Operating Support grant, thanks to a legislative appropriation from the arts and cultural heritage fund.