Spring 2019

2019 will be a year to look forward to. A beautiful spring is approaching, with numerous extraordinary productions touring both in Belgium and abroad. From renaissance and baroque music to jazz and traditional music. Zefiro Torna wishes you an inspiring and heart-warming 2019!

Discover Zefiro Torna's plans during spring 2019 in the latest news letter.


CD release BALSAM

Zefiro Torna releases 'Balsam' at Antarctica Records, successor to the productions ‘Les Tisserands’ and ‘O, Monde Aveugle!’. The project unites musicians who are experts in various genres such as old, ethnic and jazz music. This time the mysterious forces of plants, flowers and herbs formed the starting point for the programme.

"An unctuous and euphonious balsam for the mind and the soul. A truly intoxicating experience." - thus Stefan Grondelaers. Have a look at our trailer for a first impression.

Order the CD here - for yourself or as a Christmas gift. And for extra listening pleasure we offer the trilogy 'Tisserands - O Monde Aveugle - Balsam' for a small price.


Launch museum podcast Hof van Busleyden

From 9 November, you can discover the Hof van Busleyden museum in Mechelen through the eyes of three idiosyncratic storytellers. A musician translates Burgundian life into music, a classicist recounts the rebirth of the Court of Busleyden, and a psychiatrist connects past and present. The musical part is told by Jurgen De bruyn (the other museum podcasts were compiled by Patrick De Rynck and Dirk de Wachter), in an audio directed by the young radio producers Wederik De Backer and Lucas Derycke.


Allegoria at Ghent Festival of Flanders

This autumn a retrospective exhibition of Baroque painter Adriaen Brouwer will be held in his native town of Oudenarde. Brouwer was a master in painting lively folk scenes. With his sublime landscapes he inspired great masters such as Rubens.
As part of the Ghent Festival of Flanders, Zefiro Torna brings the paintings of Brouwer and contemporaries such as the young Pieter Breughel, Frans Hals and Jan Steen to life with soprano Annelies Van Gramberen. The allegorical themes from their graphics and paintings are the guiding principles: Love and Vanity, Death and Transience, Wisdom versus Foolishness and 'Rudities'. Zefiro Torna draws on a treasure trove of picturesque folk and Beggars’ songs and from collections of songs and madrigals by publishers, poets and composers such as Bredero, Vallet and Hacquart.

On Friday 28 September Klara will broadcast live from the MOU Oudenaarde. Jurgen De bruyn will be a guest at Pompidou (5-7pm), and will talk about the symbolic themes that inspired him to create the programme ‘Allegoria’.



Tears of Joy

— A wonderful musical blend from 17th century England (2009)

Zefiro Torna

  1. Anon. - Shall I weep or shall I sing
  2. Thomas Brewer (1611-c1660) - Mistake me not, I am as cold as hot
  3. Robert Ramsey (fl. 1616-1644) - Go perjur’d man! And if you e’er return
  4. Matthew Locke (1621-1677) - Pavane
  5. Thomas Morley (1557-1602) - Thyrsis and Milla (The First part)/She straight her light green silken coats (The Second part)
  6. Anon. - Have I caught my heav’nly jewel
  7. Thomas Campion (1567-1620) - It fell on a sommers day
  8. John Bartlet (fl.1610) - Of all the birds that I do know
  9. Anon. - Drewries accordes
  10. Anon. - La Rossignol
  11. Francis Pilkington (c1570-1638) - Rest, sweet nymphs
  12. Henry Lawes (1596-1662) - Slide soft you silver floods
  13. Anon. - My ladies careys dump
  14. William Webb (fl.1620-1656) - Pow’rful Morpheus, let thy charms
  15. Robert Johnson (c1583-1633) - With endless tears
  16. Robert Johnson (c1583-1633) - The Flat Pavan - Galliard
  17. Thomas Robinson (1588-1610) - A Song to the Cittern “Now Cupid, look about thee”
  18. Tobias Hume (c1569-1645) - Tobacco
  19. Broadside Ballad - Tobacco
  20. Thomas Ravenscroft (c1582-c1635) - Martin said to his man
  21. Thomas Ravenscroft (c1582-c1635) - A Round of three country dances in one
  22. Trad. - Butterfly (Jig)
  23. Robert Johnson (c1583-1633) - Have you seen the bright Lily grow
  24. John Dowland (1563-1626) - Time stands still

A ‘good song’ and dancing music were never far away in the early 17th century England of Elisabeth I and the Stuarts. Traditional grounds, allemandes, pavanes and galliards, country dances, jigs and catches could be heard right next to a folk song, a melancholy lute song, an Italian madrigal or three-voiced ‘canzonettes’. It was a time when music was threaded with references to exuberant court plays or masques and to the tragedies or comedies of the Shakespearian theatre. Which seems plausible considering the number of composers that were affiliated to the renowned theatre company of The King’s Men.

Master John ‘semper dolans’ Dowland and his contemporary Robert Johnson salute the beginning of a new century with their exquisite songs and superb lute music. When thinking about vocal instrumental consort music the names of amongst others Thomas Morley, Philip Rosseter and Richard Allison need to be noted. Composers such as Henry Lawes and William Webb, known before most for their high quality songbooks succeeded them. And finally, somewhere around 1650, we end up with the successful publisher of the manual for English dancing music, entitled “The Dancing Master”, John Playford.

The ensemble Zefiro Torna unites the best of the Belgian historical and traditional music scene and provides a delicious musical blend of sumptuous strings of lutes, cittern, guitar, theorbo and nyckelharpa, entwined with the crystal clear voice of soprano Cécile Kempenaers.

How does one reconcile the past to the present? How does one mediate a language, and an idiom, that seems so remote and so alien? (…) This band’s answer, largely, is to warp drive back to the future; to energise, Star Trek style, onto a distant time and planet armed with the impedimenta of post-1960s folk music. They have boldly gone where few, if any, have gone before. Lute songs, Jim, but not as we know them. Jonathan Woolf, Musicweb International

Tears of Joy offer you a delicate balance between pure beauty, tragedy, introspectiveness and cheerfulness, piquancies and a groovy feel.

Cécile Kempenaers soprano
Didier François Nyckelharpa
Jurgen De bruyn renaissance lute, archlute, baroque guitar, chant
Philippe Malfeyt renaissance lute, cittern, theorbo, baroque guitar, percussion