Milton G. Scheuermann Jr.

Host of Continuum

Milton has been the co-host (with Thais St. Julien) of Continuum since 1976. He is a true New Orleanean, born on Mardi Gras day, attending P. A. Capdau Grammar School and Warren Easton High School. After completing the five year program of the Tulane School of Architecture in 1956 he was drafted into the Army. After a two year stint in the combat engineers in Germany he returned to New Orleans to work with the architectural firm of Goldstein, Parham & Labouisse, becoming an associate in the firm of Parham & Labouisse after Mr. Goldstein’s death. He was appointed University Architect for Dillard University in 1972 and retired from that position in 2002.

Milton was a faculty member at the Tulane School of Architecture for 56 years, retiring in 2015 as Adjunct Professor of Architecture. He taught courses in drawing, photography, calligraphy, visual presentations and two courses that he designed himself; Architecture & Music and Architecture & Mysticism. Both courses involved his passions for music and magic.

Milton has taught piano since an 8th grade student at Capdau School. He studied piano for 16 years with Gordon Kirst, pianist at the original Roosevelt Hotel. While in Germany with the combat engineers he frequently performed as a pianist, and he also bought a Renaissance style recorder. After returning to New Orleans he began playing in a recorder ensemble, the Woodvine Recorder Consort, started by the then new South African Council General, Vere Stock. His growing love for early music culminated in the formation of New Orleans Musica da Camera in 1966. The ensemble is now the oldest continually performing early music ensemble in the world.

Many of the instruments used by Musica da Camera were constructed by Milton from original manuscript drawings. The ensemble now has the pleasure of owning well over 100 early instruments, including seven harpsichords, housed in its own building on Laurel St. in uptown New Orleans. In that building is Musica da Camera’s office, library of over 9,000 books and scores of early music, 4,000 CDs, rehearsal space and living quarters of Thaïs St. Julien (with her 3 cats), Milton’s co-director for Musica da Camera.

Equal to his passion for early music (particularly medieval and early Renaissance) is his passion for the music of Richard Wagner. He is an expert on Wagner with a deep knowledge of all of the composer’s operas, both German texts and scores, knowing all of them from memory. While still in high school, he taught himself German so that he could understand Wagner's librettos.

His third great passion is magic, as a performing art. He is a member of the Knights of Slights, and former or current officer of local chapters of the Society of American Magicians and the International Brotherhood of Magicians. Mentalism is his specialty; his performances have often made audience members more than a little uneasy about the transparency of their thoughts.

When not doing any of the above, he sleeps very soundly at night.

Ways to Connect

No, not medieval football music, but this week on Continuum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present another recording of a live Musica da Camera concert. It is Music of New Orleans Medieval Saints.

Saints Included are, St. Nicholas, St. Ursula, St. Peter, St. James, and of course, St. Expeditus.

Musica da Camera is joined by the female voices of Vox Feminae. The program is from the Musica da Camera's CD, Geaux Saints, Belle Alliance BA004.

This week on Continuum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present a live recording of a recent Musica da Camera concert about Love.

The music is of diverse places and times and includes selections by medieval composers Petrus de Cruce, La Comtessa de Dia, Guillaume de Machaut and, of course, the ubiquitous Anonymous. The program is from the Musica da Camera's CD, Love Is Where You Find It, Belle Alliance BA007.

This week on Continnum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present early music of the Ars Nova (the musical style which flourished in France and the Burgundian Low Countries in the Late Middle Ages).

Included will be a performance of the anonymous 14th century Mass of Tournai and the music of Guillaume de Machaut (c.1300-1377). Performers include The Clemencic Consort, Ensemble Organum, and The Hilleard Ensemble.

The music is from the CD, Harmonia Mundi — Century 6, from the ten CD set of Early Music on the Harmonia Mundi label.

This week on Continnum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present dance music that may have been heard in The Garden of Mirth (a garden of love) from the 13th Century poem, The Romance of the Rose, an allegory of courtly love. Lovers were supposed to have met in the garden, enticed by Cupid.

Performers are members of the English early music ensemble,The Dufay Collective. The CD, A Dance in the Garden of Mirth, is Chandos CHAN 4320.

This week on Continnum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present harpsichord music by the French composer and harpsichordist, Francois Couperin (1668-1733).

His most intriguing harpsichord work without a doubt is "The Mysterious Barricades". Music historians and scholars have never been able to give a reason for the name of the composition. Perhaps Couperin had a future vision of the many streets in uptown New Orleans now being closed by barricades and repaired as a result of  hurricane Katrina, nine years ago.

This week on Continnum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present very, very early music. Included will be Music of Ancient Greece, Music of the Bible, Byzantine Chant, Melchite Chant, and Alleluias and Offertories of the Gauls.

The music is performed by various ensembles and is from the CD Harmonia Mundi — Century 1, from the ten CD set of Early Music on the Harmonia Mundi label.

This week on Continnum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present instrumental music of the medieval through the early Baroque periods.

The three sections of the program are: Transcriptions & Reductions; Music To Be Played; and Music For Dancing. Performers include Ensemble de Violes Labyrinto, The Broadside Band, recorder player, Marion Verbruggen, and lutenists, Paul O'Dette and Andreas Martin.

The music is from the CD, Harmonia Mundi — Century 10, from the ten CD set of Early Music on the Harmonia Mundi label.

This week on Continnum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present the two most important medieval song cycles — The Llibre Vermell of Monserrat and the Cantigas de Amigo of Martin Codax.

The Llibre Vermell (Red Book, so called because of its red velvet binding in the library of the monastery of Monserrat in Catalonia, Spain) is a collection of ten anonymous pilgrims' songs of the 14th Century.

This week on Continnum Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present music from the first music publication of the Italian printer, Ottaviano dei Petrucci (1466-1530), who was the first to publish in 1501 a collection of music of the period  printed using movable type.

Included are chansons, frottole, popular Italian dances & sacred music from that printed collection.

This week on Continnum, Milton Scheuermann and Thais St. Julien present music of "Olde England". Usually one thinks that early English music was all merry and joyous. Not so. And performances by three different early music ensembles will prove it.

You'll hear The King's Noyse, The Baltimore Consort, and The Hilliard Ensemble performing this music. So, tune in and listen to a cross-section of the music of "Olde" England.

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