BY TIM SAWYIER
The University of Chicago Presents series hosted the Alba Consort Friday night at the Logan Center for the Arts in a recital entitled “Earthly Love, Divine Love.” The program was comprised of secular and religious love songs from the medieval and Renaissance Mediterranean world—repertoire that has earned the four-member, period-instrument ensemble significant international attention.
The evening opened with “Al Alba Venid,” a sixteenth-century song by an anonymous composer. The word “alba”—from which the ensemble takes its name—can mean either “white” or “the white light of dawn,” and also refers to a genre of troubadour love song, the lyrics of which are usually the words of a lover to his mate in the pre-dawn hours. The Consort set the tone for the evening in this brief work, vocalist and artistic director Margo Gezairlian Grib singing the affecting ballad with effortlessly pure intonation.