If you love music, then the original Renaissance Pleasure Faire is the place for you. Set in the 15th and 16th Century, the Faire brings its audience a musical journey fit for kids, teens and adults.
Here’s a rundown of the music you can find each weekend from April 7 to May 20 at the Santa Fe Dam Recreation Area in Irwindale, California. The Faire is open each day from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Tickets are available here.
Family fare (safe for all ages):
Ad Hoc Consort – This group performs music using period instruments including recorders, krumhorns, sackbutts and others. You can find them on the Maypole Common.
Brigid’s Daughters – Two lovely ladies singing madrigals and love songs from Spain, Italy, France and England. Find them strolling or on the Royal Music stage.
Celtic Squall – A combination of two members each from The Poxy Boggards and the Merry Wives of Windsor, this amazing quartet perform one show each day on the Royal Music stage.
Circa Paleo – These four musicians from Texas bring a special sound as they combine the sounds of medieval and renaissance times along with modern classics. Jenny the fiddler will amaze you with her skills and techniques. They can be found performing multiple times on the Maybower stage.
The Crimson Pirates – Special guest performers April 21-22 only, they perform a variety of maritime, celtic and traditional folk music. You can hear them on the Port Deptford stage.
The English Nightingale – A veteran of Florence, Venice and Rome, she comes to share her musical knowledge with her audience. She can be found on the Golden Jubilee, El Corozon de la Reina and Port Deptford stages.
Glen Morgan – A master of the hammered dulcimer, he can be found near the food court.
Owan Phyfe – A multi-linquist, he performs period songs in multiple languages for an authentic taste of the Renaissance. He can be found on the Royal Music stage.
Richard Van Healy – This celtic fiddler can be found roaming throughout the Faire.
Serenata – These lovely Italian lasses bring the sound of Italy to the English Renaissance. They are a multi-award winning ensemble who will give your ears a royal treat and can be heard daily on the Royal Music stage.
The Sultry Spanish Courtesan – She brings the flavor of Spain and Spanish America to the Trader’s Market stage.
Wren of Iniquity – Composed of Mark Sellin (baritone/tenor), Joyce Nunamaker (alto/tenor), Vickie Bottleson (soprano), Cate McDougall (soprano), David Springhorn (comic relief/baritone) and Sam Danielson (bass), they can be found throughout the Faire, with performances on the Royal Music, Golden Jubilee and Rosewreath stages.
Adult fare (all shows at Rogues Reefe stage are rated NC-17):
Belles of Bedlam – The Belles and their boys bring you an adult show at Rogues Reefe and a PG-13 version on the Golden Jubilee stage.
The Dread Crew of Oddwood – This seven-member “heavy mahogany” band brings new meaning to “pirate rock.” They are popular with teens and adults, and perform for both audiences, with a PG-13 show at Felicity Cove and an adult show at Rogues Reefe.
The Merry Wives of Windsor – These 12 lusty serving wenches dish out bawdy songs with a distinctive female perspective. Their Royal Music stage is safe for all ages, while their Rogues Reefe show is definitely adults only.
The Poxy Boggards – An original feature of Faire since 1994, this “drinking group with a singing problem” perform raunchy, bawdy songs from a male perspective. They perform traditional songs on the Royal Music stage and a decidedly NC-17 show at Rogues Reefe.
Sportive Tricks – Based in southern California, this folk-rock band with a heavy Irish influence performs throughout the faire. Their shows on the Golden Jubilee and Royal Music stages are safe for the entire family, while their Rogues Reefe show will leave you blushing.
The next article will cover the guilds that provide the atmosphere at Faire.