The Beggars' Songbook: Revolt in the Spanish Netherlands

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This concert explores music-making during the Dutch revolt against Phillip II of Spain. Geuzen, from the French word gueux, or beggars, was a name taken on with pride by the confederacy of Calvinist Dutch nobles and other malcontents after being dismissed as inconsequential and mere beggars by the Spanish. The rebellion, which spanned 1568-1648, led to the birth of the first republic in Europe and the beginnings of a national identity for the Netherlands.

The Geuzenliedboek ("Beggar's Songbook") was a popular compilation of political songs; Valerius’ Neder-landtsche Gedenck-clanck was a history of the war interspersed with songs set to popular melodies from all over Europe. We'll present these Dutch songs of political turmoil alongside works by van Eyck and Sweelinck; diferencias by Cabezon and Ortiz, and English music inspired by events across the Channel. Reception to follow.

Karen Burciaga, Jane Hershey, Anne Legéne, Colleen McGary-Smith, James Williamson - viola da gamba

Michael Barrett - tenor & recorder
Daniel Meyers - recorder & percussion
Matthew Wright - lute & Renaissance guitar