Mayflower Pilgrim and Wampanoag Heritage to Be Commemorated in Lecture-Concert Series
The landing of the Mayflower on the shores of Massachusetts in 1620 forever changed the history and cultures of four nations: America, England, the Netherlands, and the Wampanoag. Throughout the 2020 Mayflower 400 commemorative year, American Ancestors | New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) will host a Four Nation Concert Series to examine how the themes of the Mayflower story-exploration, innovation, religious freedom, self-governance, immigration, and Thanksgiving-have been expressed through the historical and more contemporary musical traditions of each nation. With performances offered quarterly in February, May, August, and November 2020, at the American Ancestors Research Center in Boston's Back Bay, this series combines musical performance with scholarly discussion and features a wide range of artists, instruments, customs, and topics.
Contrary to what the history books tell us, the Plimoth colonists, or Pilgrims as they were later called, were a highly diverse, sometimes fractious group of Separatists and Anglicans, religious zealots and irreverent opportunists from many walks of life. They brought with them experiences of music as varied as their reasons for coming to the New World.
To open the American Ancestors Four Nation Concert Series, on Monday, February 13, the musical group Seven Times Salt will appear in "Pilgrims' Progress," an hour-long lecture-concert which follows the settlers from their homes in turbulent 1590s England to religious refuge in the Netherlands, and onward to challenging new lives on the unfamiliar shores of New England. Their performance will take the audience back 400 years to the time of the Mayflower landing with music of the Elizabethan tavern and theater, spirited catches by Thomas Ravenscroft, selections from the Dutch 't Uitnement Kabinet, stirring psalms from the Ainsworth Psalter, and vigorous tunes from Playford's The English Dancing Master, all performed with period instruments and dialect.
A complete schedule for the American Ancestors 2020 Four Nations Concert Series is as follows. Programming details for each of these concert performances may be found on the website of American Ancestors at Mayflower.AmericanAncestors.org/2020-Four-Nation-Concert-Series. After all performances, a Q&A and light reception will follow. There is a $20 admission fee for each concert. Tickets may be purchased online at My.AmericanAncestors.org/1223/1439 for the first concert on February 13.