Over het album
The poems and songs of the Gruuthuse Manuscript originated in Bruges around 1400, and the collection is named after the later owner, Lodewijk van Gruuthuse. The songs form the most well-known part of the collection: love songs, bawdy songs and drinking songs. The Gruuthuse Manuscript contains the largest collection of Dutch language songs from the medieval period, and it is the largest collection of songs with music notation. The form of the songs also attests to the fact that these songs were intended for connoisseurs. The poet uses formes fixes, the canonized forms of French songs of the late medieval times: ballades, rondeaus and virelais, and the wide variety of the forms used is remarkable.
Instrumentalists have been around all over Europe during the 15th century, but musical manuscripts unambiguously showing a repertoire for instrumental ensembles from that period are scarce. The instrumental repertoire on this CD contains arrangements and polyphonic ensemble pieces from about 1450-70. The arrangements are either instrumental versions based on pre-existing polyphonic models or arranged monophonic tenors.