Duarte Lobo straddled the 16th and the 17th century, acclaimed as one of the most famous Portuguese composers of his era. From his refined, expressive music transpires the rhetorical commitment of the 17th-century ‘stile nuovo’, but concurrently we can also discern the influences of the Franco-Flemish polyphonists from the second half of the 16th century. And not only in artistic terms is there a link with our region, for Lobo’s complete corpus of preserved works was printed by the Officina Plantiniana in Antwerp, with the exception of a hymn that has only come down to us in manuscript. Among the printed works there is also the music meant for Midnight Mass: both the expressive responsories and the Missa Natalitiae Noctis were published by Plantin in 1602. The Flemish Currende, famous for its clear ensemble sound, offers you a concert steeped in nocturnal atmosphere with vocal soloists, choir and instrumental ensemble. Duarte Lobo’s easygoing combination of textual interpretation and counterpoint will be reflected in the balanced group dynamics of these talented musicians!

Erik Van Nevel, artistic direction