Concert Reviews & Press

Byron Colby Barn offers early music holiday concert

“…The concert performed by the group Rook will feature music from the medieval, Renaissance and baroque eras. Members will be joined by singers and play instruments that were popular 400 years ago, including the slide trumpet, bass violin, baroque trombone, harpsichord and cornetto…”

Sheryl DeVore

Lake County News-Sun

“This concert series brings in to the northern suburbs performers not only from the local area, but also from around the U.S, Canada, and Europe. It provides exposure to a quality and genre of live chamber music that is otherwise not accessible without making a trip into downtown Chicago, or Evanston. The variety is wonderful, and the musical level of the performances is consistently high from season to season. Those of us who are devotés of music written before 1800 support Early Music at the Byron Colby Barn by attending every concert we possibly can.”

Daniel Heiman

Medieval music called ‘an adventure

“A Gregorian chant from medieval days might not seem to have much in common with contemporary music.

But 21st century vocal music evolved from medieval times when performers began to experiment by adding harmony and other techniques, according to Amy Bearden, artistic director of the Marion Consort…”

Sheryl DeVore

Lake County News-Sun

“Spending a late Sunday afternoon listening to early music at the Byron Colby Barn is a unique experience. The musicians are first-rate and the acoustic are outstanding. It’s a special treat to hear musicians of this caliber perform in such a warm and intimate setting.”

Jim Cubit

“It has been wonderful to have such amazing early music concerts in northern Illinois. The programs have not only been incredible music-wise, but also educationally. Musicians often enjoy talking about their instruments, which are originals or copies from those played during the Renaissance or Baroque eras. All-in-all it has been quite an experience to listen to the concerts at the Barn, which hopefully will go on for many years to come.”

Robin Mendel-Rosenberg

“The Early Music series is a musical feast …. For an extremely reasonable price, one gets to hear the best early music musicians and ensembles. The acoustics are wonderful, and the musicians typically spend a good deal of time educating the audience about their instruments, choice of selections and the provenance of the music. This exquisite music comes from an era before humans lived drowned in noise and light. Played with human breath and human touch, on instruments of wood and gut, in an intimate space in a beautifully-restored old wooden barn lit by candlelight, on winter evenings as the sun sets over the prairie, the Early Music Series is a very special and rare experience.” 

Joan Gottschall