Northwestern to present madrigal dinners

The Northwestern College Heritage Singers will present madrigal dinners Jan. 22 and 23 at 7:30 p.m. in the Allen Black Box Theatre.

The dinners, representing a 16th-century medieval feast, will feature a traditional English masque, “The Sorry Tellers or Once Upon a Whine.” The king has decreed that a contest is to be held to determine the best storyteller in the kingdom. Many people arrive for the contest, including four from the far-away Shire of Sorry. The jester, upset that he is not already considered the kingdom’s best storyteller, decides to enter incognito.

“It’s a clever story,” says Dr. Thomas Holm, who directs the Heritage Singers and chairs the music department. “The audience will enjoy the storytelling and a night of fun entertainment. There will be great choral singing and outstanding food. We present this every four years, and it’s always a highlight for the students and the audience.”

The masque will be followed by a concert of madrigal pieces presented by the 28-member chamber choir. The dinner will include Italian cranberry porchetta, rosemary roasted red potatoes, honey-glazed carrots, tossed salad and Black Forest torte. Dinner and dessert entertainment will include a magic show and small-ensemble performances by members of the Heritage Singers.

Recently retired theatre professor Karen Barker will direct the drama.

Reservations are required; tickets are $30 per person. Seating capacity is limited due to physical distancing guidelines. The audience will wear masks when not eating. Tickets may be reserved by emailing Nora Verburg at by Jan. 13. They can also be purchased at or in person in DeWitt Music Hall between 9:30 a.m. and 3:30 p.m. Jan. 11–13. If you wish to buy group tickets (up to five members will be seated together), please make one purchase for the entire group.