EME records first CD

  • Early Music EnsembleThe EME at the College has produced its first CD.

    Early Music Ensemble
  • Early Music EnsembleThe cover of the CD

    Early Music Ensemble
  • Early Music EnsembleThe new CD in its jewel case

    Early Music Ensemble

For the first time ever, the students in the College of William and Mary’s Early Music Ensemble can show off their talents without needing a baroque flute or harpsichord within reach.

The ensemble, which performs medieval, renaissance and baroque music, recently released its first CD, featuring 18th-century music performed by students on period instruments and in local period buildings.

Director Ruth van Baak Griffioen said that though previous ensembles had talked about recording a CD, the dream became a reality this year thanks to the efforts of music major Christian Amonson (’09).

Amonson is studying to become a recording engineer and has recorded various music groups on campus. He approached the ensemble with the idea of creating a CD, and they agreed to give it a try.

The group selected pieces from Johann Sebastian Bach and Georg Frederic Handel to perform for the CD. All of the tracks were recorded in Bruton Parish Church, the Wren Chapel or the Wren Building’s Great Hall. Some of the tracks were recorded live during the ensemble’s local performances. The rest were recorded “like a session” in the Wren Chapel, said Griffioen.

“Basically, we just told the kids, okay, play like you did at the concert last week, and they got almost everything on the first take,” said Griffioen. “I knew the students were good, but for them to just lay down a clean track on the first try was beyond my wildest dreams.”

The $15 CD went on sale in June. It is available through the College’s music department, the Bruton Parish gift shop, Colonial Williamsburg retail shops, the Alumni Association store and the William and Mary Barnes and Noble book store. It can also be ordered online at http://kunaki.com/Sales.asp?PID=PX00MNNWMC.

For more information, visit http://www.wm.edu/music/?fetchid=8997.