foto van het egidiuskwartet

home > programmes


2 0 1 3 - 2 0 1 4 season

The Leiden Choirbooks

In 2013, the Egidius Kwartet presents the fourth edition of this mammouth six year project, in which selected music from the Leiden Choirbooks is recorded and performed
Leiden Choirbooks  
Period: 2010 - 2015
The Egidius Kwartet has blown the dust off an important piece of Dutch national heritage
For over four hundred years the city of Leiden has held a hidden treasure of immense musical value. Hardly anyone knew of its existence, even in Leiden itself. We are talking about six enormous choirbooks, compiled for the singers of the 16th-century College of the Seven Canonical Hours of the Pieterskerk (St. Peter's Church). Together they represent a rare legacy, and form one of the largest comprehensive collections of 16th century religious music. Moreover, they contain works by some of the most illustrious composers of the age. How can it be that this wealth of music remained unheard for so long?
The Egidius Kwartet has taken the initiative to rectify this. Over a period of six years, by means of an annual series of concerts, CD recordings and a website, they are resurrecting this unique piece of Dutch national heritage from the archives.
Performers: Egidius Kwartet & College
For more details, visit

Continuous programmes

In Praise of Feminine Beauty  

Period: all year round
In the 16th century, songs were written about almost every part of the female body. Top composers such as di Lasso, Janequin and Sweelinck and their lesser known colleagues have sung the praise of brown eyes, golden hair, red lips and long necks in poetic or rather more graphic language. New epigrams have been written by the contemporary poet Luuk Gruwez, and the programme concludes with a moral: Goudimel’s chanson about the relationship between body and soul.
Performers: Egidius Kwartet
Programme details pdf (82 Kb)
Modern English & American Carols
Old Dutch songs and polyphony
Reflections on Christmas by Godfried Bomans
Period: Christmas (of course!)
What can we say about Christmas carols?
As primitive as they are, it is an almost intoxicating pleasure to sing and listen to them. Do we have to explain yet again that we are Renaissance specialists? That is not what you want to hear in December, and nor do we. We sing in December simply because it is so heavenly to sing Christmas music. And that is a curious fact: you recognize Christmas music straight away, and that has nothing to do with all the bells and glorias. Intimacy and warmth... it is all there. From William Walton to Gheerkin de Hondt, from the American parson Burt to the priest Clemens non Papa. The great Dutch writer Godfried Bomans tries to explain the Christmas feeling. His reflections run like a thread through this eclectic programme.
Performers: Egidius Kwartet
Details: pdf (39 Kb)

In this programme, the Egidius Kwartet takes the audience on a relatively easy excursion into the realms of Renaissance music. A Magical Mystery Tour...  
Period: All year round
The term ‘Renaissance’ refers, amongst other things, to the revival of the Art of the Ancient World, and to the knowledge of Classic Mythology. It therefore might be appropriate to use the Hydra as a perfect symbol for the rich and many-headed variety of 16th century polyphony
Performers: Egidius Kwartet
Details: pdf (51 Kb)