BALSAM on tour

This autumn, the alchemistic laboratory BALSAM with Laika, Theatre of the Senses will be on tour again. After two series of performances at the Boulevard Festival in Den Bosch and Cultura Nova in Heerlen in August, the team is ready for it! Prepare yourself for a bewitching ritual in which music, scents and flavours immerse you in the shimmering world of alchemy. Besides the Greenwich+Docks International Festival in London and a tour to Portugal and France, BALSAM also passes by a number of Belgian venues.

--> Take a look in the agenda for all dates


Release documentary PAST >| ORALE

As an introduction to the performance PAST >I ORALE Zefiro Torna asked film maker Mathias Ruelle to create a short documentary. Through the eyes of five characters, this film highlights a few elementary parts from which the performance originated. The music of PAST >I ORALE - a wonderful mix of Beethoven, sound art and alternative pop - resonates as a soundtrack.

> Watch the documentary here (from June 15th until July 13th)


CD release Llibre Vermell

'A summer evening in Catalonia, 1399. A group of pilgrims are sitting next to the wall of the abbey church of Montserrat. They have come in search of forgiveness, purification, a fresh start.' Zefiro Torna and Psallentes re-opened this famous "Llibre Vermell de Montserrat". You can find our intimate version of the pilgrim songs on our newest CD, out now on the label Le Bricoleur. Get your copy here, it's the ideal soundtrack for a relaxing summer evening.


BALSAM on Podium 19

Tune in to Podium 19, a new tv-channel for culture, on Sunday 21 March at 6pm for BALSAM, and let yourself be carried away by the enchanting music and images of the alchemistic concert by Zefiro Torna and Laika. Afterwards you can watch the show for another month on VRTnu.

Of course we look forward to welcome you live again into this magic laboratory. We are planning a long tour in Belgium and abroad, which we hope to start in June.


Music for the Christmas Season

Tired of yet another version of Jingle Bells or All I Want for Christmas? Maybe you'll like our 'Special Seasonal Mix' on Spotify, a selection of songs to spice up this cold December month.

Even though we celebrate Christmas a little differently this year, presents are always nice to receive and to give. Balsam's music literally works as a balm to many souls in these times, an ideal gift for under the Christmas tree. Thanks to a stock sale of the Homerecords label, you can buy the Scattered Rhymes CD with the Frank Vaganée Trio at a discount price of 5 euros. For a swinging start of 2021!


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Llibre Vermell de Montserrat

—  (2021)

Zefiro Torna - Psallentes

A summer evening in Catalonia, 1399. A group of pilgrims are sitting next to the wall of the abbey church of Montserrat. They have come in search of forgiveness, purification, a fresh start. While waiting, they sing and play songs for the Virgin Mary. A monk from the abbey had gathered this music into a manuscript. Later, the book was given a red binding. Two of Flanders’ finest early music ensembles have, together, opened up this ‘Red Book of Montserrat’.

  1. Stella splendens in monte
  2. Laudemus virginem & Splendens ceptigera
  3. Los set goytxs recomptarem
  4. Cuncti simus concanentes
  5. Polorum regina
  6. Mariam matrem virginem
  7. Quen servir a Madre & Gran fe devea (Cantigas de Santa Maria) [Instrumental, arr. Jowan Merckx]
  8. Imperayritz de la ciutat joyosa
  9. Ad mortem festinamus
  10. O virgo splendens

Zefiro Torna

  • Jurgen De bruyn artistic director
  • Jowan Merckx recorders, bagpipes and percussion
  • Manuela Bucher medieval fiddle
  • Jurgen De bruyn medieval lute & guiterne


  • Hendrik Vanden Abeele artistic director
  • Conor Biggs, Gunter Claessens, Pieter Coene, Adriaan De Koster, Michiel Haspeslagh, Paul Schils, Philippe Souvagie & Hendrik Vanden Abeele voices

Harry De Winde sound engineer
Hilde Vertommen artwork
Kris Thielemans album design

Recorded at AMUZ, Antwerp, Belgium

Le Bricoleur 2017 - LBCD/13