Countertenor Korneel Van Neste and lutenist Justin Glaie have selected a few gems of English vocal music, including works of John Danyel and John Dowland. In 1957, John Dowland published a book with lute music that would become a beacon in the history of English song. Such refined works for solo voice and lute had been common on the continent since the early 15th century, yet we can draw that the genre had not yet reached England based on the more simple examples that were written down in the times before Dowland.
Dowland sets himself apart from his contemporaries because of his strong sense of melody, his talent for selecting or even writing excellent texts and the finesse and musical significance of his lute accompaniments. Further, he stands out because of his frequent use of dance forms, his arrangements of well-known lute solos and his search for recitative-like textures. With the publication of Dowland’s Firste Booke of Songes, the contemporary Tudor audience experienced a musical event of great significance that proved to be the prelude to a new and extremely popular genre. The Firste Booke of Songes was reprinted five times and Dowland published three more song collections, as well as contributions to other printings. Moreover, the London presses were flooded with lute song books for 25 years: composers such as Thomas Campion and Robert Jones wrote several collections, while others like Alfonso Ferrabosco, John Danyel, Francis Pilkington and Thomas Morley each wrote one book. In 1622, the last publication of the genre, a lute piece by John Attey, came to light as a glorious highlight of an already musically rich period.
A solo piece for lute takes us back to early 16th century Italy, where the repertoire for this stringed instrument was already flourishing. Francesco da Milano was a leading light in this field and spent a large part of his life at the papal court in the Vatican. He was praised for his improvisations, and his Fantasia is perhaps living proof of his imaginative musical genius.
This project was created thanks to the donations of many music lovers to AMUZ’s ‘Support Fund for Young Belgian Artists’. Read more.
Francesco Canova da Milano (1497-1543). Fantasia
John Danyel (1564-ca. 1626). Like as the lute delights
Anthony Holborne (1545-1602). Pavan
John Dowland (1563-1626). Can she excuse my wrongs
John Dowland. In darkness let me dwell
John Dowland. Time stands still
Korneel Van Neste, countertenor | Justin Glaie, lute
As a boy, Korneel Van Neste sang for seven years in the children’s choir of the Flemish Opera. He studied singing with Annelies van Gramberen at the Lemmens Institute and continued his master’s studies in singing (early music) with Rita Dams, Peter Kooij, Robin Blaze, Pascal Bertin and Michael Chance at the Royal Conservatoire of The Hague.
Korneel Van Neste is passionate about historical notation and polyphony, he also sings regularly with Currende and Diskantores, to name a couple. Since 2018, he has been a member of Cappella Pratensis. As a soloist, he sang in oratorios by Pergolesi, Vivaldi, J.S. Bach and Telemann. He also sang the role of Morphée in the opera Atys by Lully conducted by Sébastien Marq.
Justin Glaie studied lute, theorbo and viol at the conservatories of Tours, Paris and in Brussels with Nicolas Achten and Philippe Pierlot. Justin Glaie also completed his training as a luthier at the Centre for Musical Instrument Building in Puurs.
Meanwhile, he is a much sought-after musician and appears in ensembles such as Scherzi Musicali, Sweete Devils, Transports Publics, InAlto, Musae Jovis and La Grande Chapelle, with whom he has also recorded numerous CDs.