Mount Union College Students Present Medieval Renaissance Fair

April 22, 2010

Mount Union College students will be holding a Medieval Renaissance Fair on Friday, November 30 at 5:30 p.m. in the Campus Grounds.


English professors Dr. John Bienz and Dr. Katherine McMahon originated the idea for the Renaissance Fair about seven years ago. Dr. McMahon had always done medieval food and displays in her classes, and Dr. Bienz had encouraged his students in Shakespeare class to perform medieval scenes. The two professors decided to combine their ideas and came up with the Medieval Renaissance Fair.

"The fair is a hands-on learning experience for the people involved," said Dr. Bienz. "It gives students who might not normally get a chance to perform with the opportunity."

The fair is a student-centered and student-run project. Dr. Bienz and Dr. McMahon play a supportive role.

"I meet often with groups of performers to see how they are progressing during practices. Dr. McMahon comes to the fair in costume," said Dr. Bienz.

The fair also receives help from the campus Food Services, who provide food and assistance in preparation. This year, other members of the college faculty are helping with the fair. Assistant music professor Rachel Eggars Shaffer has volunteered to play the recorder.

Dr. Bienz is always satisfied with the presence of a large audience at the fair. There are typically about 120-150 people in attendance.

"Students don't have to come, but they do," said Dr. Bienz.

The fair will also feature performances by students in the Chaucer, Shakespeare and English Renaissance classes.

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