PCC's 2nd Annual Medieval Renaissance Festival slated for Saturday, September 20

September 17, 2014

The terms Renaissance and unique are forming a unique partnership at Pamlico Community College.

Renaissance grammarians note that nothing is somewhat unique or very unique. It’s either unique or not unique. According to Simon Spalding, The 2nd Annual Medieval and Renaissance Festival at PCC, this Saturday, September 20, is unique east of Rocky Mount in North Carolina’s Coastal Plain.

Spalding, who is coordinating the event as a part of Cultural/Life Enrichment programs at the college, said, “Until now, Renaissance Festivals have never occurred this close to the central coast.

This year’s festival features abundantly more entertainment than last year’s program. Though definitely not a three-ring circus, there will be three stages of ongoing activities compared to two stages last year.

Spalding reported,  “Craven Consort and Tuppence are returning to this year’s festival, and we have quite a few groups coming this year for the first time. I am thrilled beyond belief to put this together for area residents. The variety of entertainment and demonstrations will be educational, and yet also delight people of all ages.”

New groups this year include:

Thursday Morn, a string group, including violin and hammered dulcimer along with other stringed instruments, has performed at They group will perform in the Atrium outside the Delamar Center Auditorium at both 11 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Pamlico Brass, a local brass ensemble will perform Renaissance and early Baroque music on instruments of the trumpet family. Trumpets and sackbutts, predecessors of the trombone, were used extensively in Medieval and Renaissance music. This group will perform in the Delamar Center Auditorium at 1 and 2:30 p.m.

The Heritage Troubadours, directed by Cheryl Kite, sing madrigals and other Renaissance vocal music. They will perform in the Delamar Center Auditorium at Noon and 1:30 p.m.

Coastal Winds, a quintet of woodwind instruments, will play a variety of Early Music on the Auditorium Stage at 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. 

Stage magician Gary Shelton will perform on the “Bear Garden Stage” at 11:30 a.m. and 1:30 p.m. Spalding commented, “I have seen him perform several times, and I know he will be an excellent addition to our event.”

Groups returning to the festival from last year include Craven Consort and Tuppence.

Craven Consort has performed Early Music in and around Craven County since 1973. Under the direction of Roger Bennett, the consort has performed at the NC Renaissance Festival in Raleigh and in numerous other venues. The group performs on a mix of recorders and flutes, as well as plucked and bowed stringed instruments. Craven Consort will perform in the Delamar Atrium at 12:30 and 2 p.m.

Tuppence is the duo of Simon and Sara Spalding. They have performed ballads, dance tunes, and other traditional music on violin, guitar, the bodhran, an Irish drum, and other instruments for audiences as far-flung as Louisiana, California, and Scotland. Tuppence performs in the atrium at Noon.

Other attractions are:

Simon Spalding will teach English Country Dances that were familiar in the court of Queen Elizabeth for young and old in the Delamar Atrium at 2:30 p.m. This is for everybody!

A Combat Arena outdoors will feature Medieval and Renaissance martial arts in the. These include demonstrations of Archery by Crispin of the Shire of Cathenar at Noon and 1:30 p.m. The Triangle Sword Guild will stage an exhibition of sword fighting by at 12:30 p.m. and 2 p.m. Christophe, also of the Shire of Cathenar, will stage exhibitions of rapier fencing at 11:30 a.m. and 1 p.m.

Food, jewelry, and other wares will be offered for sale but it is most likely the food will be contemporary in flavor, not from the Middle Ages. Street characters will include a Town Crier as well as Grace O’Malley, an Irish Pirate Queen on her way to meet with Queen Elizabeth.

Leigh Russell, the college librarian, coordinates PCC’s cultural events with assistance from Denise Meyerson. “For those who missed last year’s festival, this is surely an event not to miss this year. No one will come away disappointed. This is a real treat for Pamlico County and the surrounding area,” she said.

Contact Russel to learn more, lrussell@pamlicocc.edu, 252-249-1851 × 3033.