Folías y Romanescas: The Golden Age Of The Viol



Jordi Savall, Hespèrion XXI and Tembembe Ensamble Continuo perform Folias y Romanescas

Jordi Savall, ‘a performer of genius’ (The New Yorker) is joined by an intimate ensemble drawn from Hespèrion XXI, including his long-time colleague harpist Andrew Lawrence-King, to travel across Europe, from Spain to England, from the Renaissance to the Baroque.

The viola da gamba is the poet-prince of a flourishing and polyglot artistic world, prized for its human-like voice and ability to convey a rainbow of moods. It was at home at the court of Versailles as the pubs of London. Savall and Hesperion XXI survey works from the height of the viol’s reign, by Diego Ortiz, Tobias Hume and especially Marin Marais and his mysterious teacher Monsieur de Sainte-Colombe, the subject of the film Tous le matins du monde, for which Savall provided a soundtrack of peerless historical accuracy and beauty. Savall coaxes music that is seductive and melancholy, stately and spirited out of his magical instrument, making the past as immediate and fresh as the present.

Presented by Melbourne Recital Centre


Pieces and improvisations from the golden age of the viola da gamba in Spain, France and England on instruments of the period. An East Coast exclusive.


Jordi Savall, viola da gamba and direction

Hespèrion XXI:
Xavier Díaz-Latorre, guitar and theorbo
Andrew Lawrence-King, Spanish Baroque harp
Xavier Puertas, double Bass
David Mayoral, percussion

About Jordi Savall

Jordi Savall is an adventurer in space and time. For more than three decades he has devoted himself to recreating the sound of the past, taking listeners on grand tours of discovery into remotest antiquity and distant lands. With his blend of scholarship, imagination and intuition, Savall has forged a legendary career as the world’s leading exponent of the exquisitely expressive viola da gamba and as a leader of three ensembles of virtuoso period instruments. There is something miraculous about Savall’s playing: a sense that no matter how fragmentary or obscure the source, music simply, movingly blooms at his touch.

‘Jordi Savall is beloved by Melbourne Recital Centre audiences, who have immersed themselves in the gorgeous sound-worlds he creates in Elisabeth Murdoch Hall. Jordi’s spellbinding artistry, profound understanding and the soul that he communicates in his playing make his concerts unforgettable experiences, and ones that invite us to consider the big ideas – peace, globalisation, cultural conflict and exchange.’ Marshall McGuire, Melbourne Recital Centre Director of Artistic Planning

Hespèrion XXI

With a repertoire that encompasses the period between the 10th and 18th centuries, Hespèrion XXI searches continuously for new points of union between the East and West, with a clear desire for integration and for the recovery of international musical heritage, especially that of the Mediterranean basin and its links to the New World. Thanks to the outstanding work of numerous musicians and collaborators who have worked with the ensemble over all these years Hespèrion XXI still plays a key role in the recovery and reappraisal of the musical heritage, and one that has great resonance throughout the world. The group has published more than 60 CDs and performs concerts for the whole world, appearing regularly at the great international festivals of ancient music.