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Early Music Princeton (EMP), directed by harpsichordist Wendy Young, is an umbrella organization devoted to the exploration of early music for graduate and undergraduate students in all disciplines, as well as faculty and staff members at Princeton University. Members of Early Music Princeton study and perform vocal and instrumental repertoire spanning the centuries from Medieval and Renaissance to High Baroque, with a special focus on historical performance practices. EMP’s ensembles include the Early Music Princeton Singers, Viol Consort, and Chamber Players (both modern and original instruments). EMPLOrk is a collaboration between EMP and the Princeton Laptop Orchestra, bringing the worlds of early and new music closer together.
EMP has a large instrument collection, including harpsichords, violins, viola, cello, a full range of viols, and Baroque bows, to name but a few, allowing for the exploration and performance of a wide range of repertoire.
Wendy Young is joined by faculty members Nancy Wilson (Baroque Violin and Viola), Sarah Cunningham (Viola da gamba and Baroque Cello), and Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek (Soprano), all internationally renowned early music specialists. EMP also has an Outreach program, focusing on taking early music beyond the university campus, as well as organizing interactive workshops for both students and the community.
EMP is open to all instrumentalists and singers. We look forward to continuing to expand our repertoire and to bringing early music to both Princeton University and the community.
I absolutely fell in love with the baroque violin as a member of Early Music Princeton and as Nancy’s student. I first became interested in playing early music during the fall of my junior year, while I was studying abroad at the Royal College of Music in London. When I returned to Princeton, I joined EMP, and was so struck by the sense of community in the weekly rehearsals and various performances. In the span of only a few months, EMP played the St. John Passion with The English Concert and the Glee Club, a full chamber ensemble program (also with the English Concert), our own concert at the Chapel, and a collaboration concert with professional baroque dancers. I was able to do academic research related to early music as well— I did some of my independent work on the links between French baroque music and the literature of the time. Because of my wonderful experience in EMP, I have been inspired to continue playing the baroque violin after graduation. I am so grateful for the countless opportunities that EMP has given me as both a student and performer! (Hana Mundiya ’20)
EMP ensembles usually meet on Friday afternoons. Rehearsals and coachings are scheduled between 12pm and 4:30pm, exact times for each ensemble TBD. If your group cannot meet on Friday afternoon, we will do our best to accommodate an alternate rehearsal time.
Private lessons are offered by our faculty. Undergraduate instrumentalists and singers who participate in an EMP ensemble qualify for subsidized lessons. Contact our faculty for more information:
Wendy Young, Director and Harpsichord
Jacqueline Horner-Kwiatek, Soprano
Sarah Cunningham, Viola da gamba and Baroque Cello
Nancy Wilson, Baroque Violin and Viola