“How to Host a Madrigal Dinner” Book




First time hosting a madrigal dinner?

Madrigal dinners are fantastic fundraisers and entertaining events for high schools, choirs, and even non-profits. But, if you’ve never done one before, it can be overwhelming. This short book will be ye olde manual to successfully plan and perform your first madrigal dinner!

Revised in 2016 with even more ideas! 



Order a PDF Version or Hard Copy Version.

This book will walk you through questions like:

  • What’s the timeline for planning, promoting, and performing a madrigal or medieval dinner?
  • What committees do I need to make the event possible?
  • What are some tips for a banquet?
  • How do I train the servers?
  • Where do I start with costumes?
  • How can a decorate a big space on a small budget?

Check out our Table of Contents:

Introduction: What is a Madrigal or Medieval Dinner?

Quick Reference to the Age                                                                                          

Some Basic Renaissance Vocabulary                                                                        

General Tips for your Dinner                                                                                         

Timeline for Preparation                                                                                                     

Committee Tasks                                                                                                             

  • Publicity & Fliers 
  • Ticket Sales & Reservations 
  • Programs 
  • Sound/Lighting 
  • Decorations 
    • Tables
    • General atmosphere
    • Stock pieces: banners, shields, & coats-of-arms
    • Stock pieces: large door coverings
    • Stock pieces: backdrops
  • Costumes 
  • Food Preparation 
  • Kitchen Staff 
  • Servants & Pages (Wait Staff) 
  • Strike (tear-down)  

Help for the Director of the Show                                                                              

  • Selecting a location & figuring out a floor plan 
  • Platforms 
  • Setting the mood 
  • Details, details, details 
  • Extra help for your characters 

Ideas that Maximize your Event                                                                                  

  • Marketplace ideas       
  • Pre-show entertainment 
  • Interacting with patrons 
  • Some stock jokes 
  • Welcome & blessing 
  • Setting the tone 
  • Engaging the audience 

Additions to the Show                                                                                                    

  • Winning a Damsel’s Love 
  • Cyrano                                                             
  • Entrance Theme Songs
  • Trivia Contest 
  • Medieval Newlywed Game  

Sample Menus and Wassail Recipes                                                                          


  • Standard songs
  • Some favorite Christmas Songs

Bibliography of Helpful Resources