Lassus Grand Cru

— Musical wine tasting (2017)

Zefiro Torna - Stefaan Degand

The masterful renaissance composer Orlandus Lassus performed all contemporary 16th-century music genres with similar easy and lucidity. Apart from writing impressive spiritual works such as masses, passions and motets, he also applied himself to more popular genres. During Mons 2015, European Capital of Culture, that had an important focus on Lassus, the idea of organising a Lassus Pub Crawl arose. Amateur choirs from numerous European cities gathered around Orlandus Lassus’ repertoire of French chansons, Italian villanelles and German drinking songs. Together they took the audience on a musical journey with short concerts in the setting of cafés and taverns.

From this repertoire, lute player and artistic director Jurgen De bruyn compiled an elysian program for professional vocalists and instrumentalists. The French chansons play all the strings of the soul: sometimes with poetry from the Pléiade, sometimes scabrous, vulgar or even explicitly erotic. The Italian villanelles and nonsensical moresche are colourful dancing songs that are easy on the ear. Also the German täpfrige drinking songs, referring in their texts to the profusely flowing wine and beer, may not be lacking.


The program forms a heavenly match with an exquisite selection of wines that can be tasted during the performance. Connoisseur of wines Emmanuel Vandeperre (Vineplus) carefully selects these wines, finding inspiration in Lassus’ European home grounds and the song’s specific characteristics. Counter tenor and certified oenophile Steve Dugardin and actor Stefaan Degand entertains the audience with delightful trivia.

  • Cécile Kempenaers soprano
  • Steve Dugardin counter tenor
  • Jan Van Elsacker tenor
  • Tiemo Wang/Florian Götz bass

  • An Van Laethem/Annelies Decock renaissance violin
  • Dimos de Beun recorder, spinet
  • Philippe Malfeyt lute, colascione
  • Jurgen De bruyn lute, renaissance guitar, artistic direction

Stefaan Degand actor
Steve Dugardin maître de cérémonie