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Travel to 1590 at Drexel University’s 30th Annual Madrigal Dinners

Madrigal Dinner

January 27, 2020

On February 21 and 22, 2020, the Drexel Chamber Singers and guest performers take you back in time for an evening of madrigals, chansons, lute songs, and lieds with the 30th Annual Madrigal Dinners in the Great Court of Drexel University’s Main Building. This year, audiences will be transported to the Elizabethan sounds, tastes, and courtly improvisations of 1590.

The Drexel Chamber Singers present a new storyline each year at the Madrigal Dinners. Paired with an authentic dining experience, the 16-voice ensemble, dressed in full Renaissance costume, performs a range of music from England’s Elizabethan period, with storytelling and comedy. Since its first performance in 1991, the Madrigal Dinner has enjoyed successful runs in the Great Court of Main Building each winter.

All walks of life can find something to enjoy at the Madrigal Dinners. Audience members can expect a jovial and relaxed atmosphere. Dr. Steven Powell, ensemble director, says “First time visitors often expect this to be a formal, dignified event—they are usually surprised at how much fun there is at the dinner, with the performers interacting with them and the scripted (and sometimes unscripted) action that takes place during the dinner portion and around the more formal concert portion at the end.” Ensemble members entertain their audience with both their music and actions.

The Madrigal Dinners have been a highlight for Drexel University’s Department of Performing Arts and its participating students for the past 30 years. Members of the Chamber Singers not only enjoy learning secular music of the Renaissance, but also about the life, culture, and history of the period.

The performances will take place on February 21 and 22, 2020 at 7:30 pm in the Great Court (Main Building, NE corner of 32nd & Chestnut Streets). Both nights feature a full Renaissance dinner with Potage Jacqueline, Roast Capon, and more. Guests who have their own Renaissance attire are welcome to come in costume, though it is not required or expected. Tickets are available at

For more information, please contact Drexel University’s Department of Performing Arts at 215-895-ARTS or

About the Drexel University Chamber Singers

The Chamber Singers, directed by Dr. Steven Powell, are a select group of 16 singers, chosen by audition from the University Chorus, who perform primarily secular music from the Renaissance (madrigals, chansons, and partsongs). The group is made up of students with majors including Electrical Engineering, Film & Television, Music Industry, Biological Engineering, Computer Science, Health Services Administration, and several others. In addition to the Madrigal Dinner, the group performs in the University Chorus concert in the Fall and Spring.

About Drexel University’s Department of Performing Arts

The Drexel University Department of Performing Arts is a dedicated community of artists, faculty, and staff committed to providing quality education in dance, music, and theater. The Department looks to expand students' knowledge and skills through academic coursework, rigorous technical training, experiences with professional artists, innovative community outreach, and outstanding performance opportunities. The Department of Performing Arts is home to the dance major and eight minors. It is also home to over 20 performing ensembles including the University Chorus, University Orchestra, Drexel Dance Ensemble, and Drexel Co-Op Theatre Company. For more information, visit