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30th Annual Madrigal Dinner

by Alumni Relations

This year marked the 30th Annual Madrigal Dinner. Traditionally in the United States, Madrigal is a form of comedic dinner theater that is set in the Middle Ages and features choral pieces from the medieval to renaissance periods. Presented by the Student Events Center, this year’s Madrigal kept the UT tradition alive and was performed to around 1,000 people over the course of 4 evenings.

30th Annual Madrigal Dinner
30th Annual Madrigal Dinner

Guests were greeted with carols in the Presidential Lobby of the Texas Union on their way into the ballroom for the dinner and performance. At the dinner, they were treated to a tale of a knight’s bungled attempt to take over the throne, a queen in a warring kingdom trying to thwart his plan, and the king reviving himself just in the nick of time to restore order to his kingdom.

Even though the story and the players change each year, Madrigal Dinner maintains its allure to the audience. For many, Madrigal is a yearly tradition and more than just a fun filled evening with family and friends. On any given night it is not unusual to encounter a table of guests who not only attend each year, but were once a part of the magic when they were students.

Associate Executive Director for University Unions Support Services, Robert Lawrence, was involved in Madrigal Dinner both as a student and in later years as an administrator. He noted that although there was no way to put into words the exact feeling of what Madrigal is or what it means to those involved, there was indeed something intrinsically woven into it that draws the audience in and keeps them returning year after year.

Students performing at the 30th Madrigal
Students performing at the 30th Madrigal

The technical director of this year’s Madrigal, Ameer Mobarak, remarked on his memories of Madrigal in the playbill, “There are way too many memories that made Madrigal more than a student organization/production, but a family. I met and got the opportunity to work with so many talented individuals of all backgrounds. These remarkable individuals made each rehearsal and performance more memorable than the last.”

As was the case for many years leading up to the 30th Madrigal, many of the students return to participate throughout their entire tenure at the University. One student, Travis Ripley, said of his time in Madrigal, “I can’t think of any other moment where I’ve been more proud of how far I’ve come or how much I had been able to accomplish at UT.”

With this level of talent and interest, it is no wonder that Madrigal continues going strong year after year. So even if you missed the 30th annual performance, you can be sure to count on another fascinating medieval tale of kings and queens (and don’t forget the jester!) next November.


Newsletter Edition: 
December 2010