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Van Eyck: Pleasure Garden / Johannette Zomer, Luis Beduschi

Van Eyck / Zomer / Beduschi
Release Date: 10/11/2011 
Label:  Eloquentia   Catalog #: 1126   Spars Code: DDD 
Composer:  Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Number of Discs: 1 
Recorded in: Stereo 
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Notes and Editorial Reviews



EYCK Der Fluyten Lusthof: selections Luis Beduschi (rcr); dir; Johannette Zomer (voc); Armonia e Invenzione Ens (period instruments) ELOQUENTIA 1126 (68:47 Text and Translation)


During the early years of the 17th century, the musical fabric of the northern Netherlands underwent gut-wrenching change. With the founding of the Dutch Republic in 1581 and the de facto sanctioning of the Dutch Read more Reformed Church as the state religion, ostentatious public music-making, such as had been the custom in the Catholic Church, came to an abrupt end. What was left was mostly the house-music that flourished in the homes of the newly minted Dutch bourgeoisie. This religious and social shift may partly explain the genesis of the remarkable collection known as Der Fluyten Lusthof, roughly translated “the pleasure-garden of the flutes.” Published in two volumes in 1649 by Jacob van Eyck (c.1590–1657), a blind carilloneur and central figure in 17th-century Dutch musical life, it is an eclectic compilation of nearly 150 popular English, Dutch, Italian, French, and German songs, transcribed for soprano recorder. Evidently the Calvinist authorities didn’t feel the need to clamp down on the innocuous secular material of Der Fluyten Lusthof —their main target was anything that smacked of papism or heresy. We may marvel at the encyclopedic nature of van Eyck’s selections, but even more astonishing is his treatment of the songs. Each tune is heard initially in its unadorned state, followed by a series of diminutions, or elaborations and embellishments on the original melody. These often begin quite slowly and build in rhythmic and harmonic intensity, ending in a blaze of notes. Think of Charlie Parker playing an extended solo on a simple tune like KoKo —it’s that sort of fanciful, free-wheeling music-making. Presumably the high virtuosity demanded of the performer is a good indicator of van Eyck’s own prowess on the recorder; it certainly represents a culmination and pinnacle in the time-honored Renaissance skill of diminution.


There has been no shortage of good recordings of Der Fluyten Lusthof , although to date no one has attempted a complete recording. The most extensive sampling of this music can be heard on the two Harmonia Mundi CDs recorded by Dutch recorder player Marion Verbruggen in the 1990s; Elliott S. Hurwitt praised the second volume in Fanfare 20:2. In the hands of a gifted performer like Verbruggen, the music can be quite mesmerizing—it’s hard to imagine adding anything to that single, exquisite instrumental line. Yet Brazilian recorder player Luis Beduschi has done exactly that: He has supplemented van Eyck’s recorder parts with a vocal line (lifted from the original song settings), as well as a newly crafted instrumental accompaniment. The instrumental contingent varies in size according to the piece. At its smallest, only a lute is used; at its largest it consists of violin, two violas, bass viola da gamba, harpsichord, and theorbo.


Although many of the tunes on this CD originated in England (Dowland, Lawes, Jones), Beduschi has elected to use the Dutch texts, since this is the version that van Eyck knew. But in most cases the Dutch poetry is not an exact fit for the melody, necessitating a bit of creativity of the part of the arranger (Beduschi goes into great detail about this process in the liner notes). It was a little disconcerting to hear a thrice-familiar tune like Can She Excuse My Wrongs? (Dowland) sung to the words “Waneer dien grooten dagh” (Lusthof II), but I got over it. Every number is presented strophically; Beduschi either plays the original van Eyck material in alternation with the verses of the song, or else he weaves his melody on top of the vocal line. Sometimes he is heard by himself, as in the anonymous German Was wölln wir auff den Abendt thun? (Lusthof I), or the anonymous Boffons (Lusthof II).


Beduschi is a bit cryptic in his description of how the instrument accompaniments came to be, but in most cases I detect elements from the original settings. Dowland’s lute accompaniments, for example, can be easily stretched to full consort—in many cases, they are available in an alternate scoring for viols. Beduschi himself is a very capable performer, easily negotiating the considerable challenges in the recorder part. With her pretty voice and graceful manner, soprano Johannette Zomer is a good choice to deliver the vocal component.


Whether you will be drawn to this compilation of arrangements depends, I suppose, on your mindset. For those purists and enthusiasts steeped in the wonders of late-Renaissance music, van Eyck’s original settings are sufficient and any gloss or trope amounts to gilding the lily. For the uninitiated or less finicky, however, this CD is a very agreeable way to get acquainted with the music. Lovely recorded sound, too—in all, a pleasant hour of music-making that paints a reasonably accurate picture of the period, even though the music has never been heard in this exact format until now.


FANFARE: Christopher Brodersen
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Works on This Recording

1. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 70, O slaep, o zoete slaep by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
2. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 64, Tweede Carileen by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
3. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 63, Eerste Carileen by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
4. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 61, Derde, Doen Daphne d'over by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
5. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 51, Wat zalmen op den Avond doen by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
6. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 5, Malle Symen by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
7. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 33, Comagain by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
8. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 28, Engels Nachtegaeltje by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
9. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 27, Ballette Gravesand by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
10. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 21, Bravade by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
11. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 120, Courant "Harte diefje waerom zoo stil" by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
12. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 111, Excusemoy by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
13. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 108, Boffons by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione
Period: Baroque 
Written: by 1646; Netherlands 
14. Der Fluyten Lust-hof: no 61, Derde Carileen by Jan Jacob Van Eyck
Performer:  Johannette Zomer (Soprano)
Conductor:  Luis Beduschi
Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Armonia E Invenzione

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