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My childhood was spent in stories and gardens…
Recorder virtuosa Genevieve Lacey explores gardens, real and imagined, old and new – from the original ‘Pleasure Garden’, a series of exquisite musical vignettes by the Dutch nobleman Jacob van Eyck, to contemporary compositions contemplating our relationship with the botanical world.
Jacob Van Eyck’s mid-seventeenth-century Der Fluyten Lust-hof (The Flute’s Pleasure Garden) is a recorder player’s treasure trove. A compendium of European popular song from the High Renaissance, Der Fluyten Lust-hof is the largest surviving collection of solo woodwind music from any age.
Van Eyck, blind from birth, was employed by the city of Utrecht chiefly to play the city’s carillon, but was famously given a pay rise to wander through Janskerkhof public gardens in the evenings, to entertain passers-by on ‘his little flute’. The lusthof, or pleasure garden, was a domesticated version of Arcadia, a public site for recreation, courtship and listening.
In Pleasure Garden, Van Eyck’s compositions are set alongside contemporary works by Genevieve Lacey and sound designer Jan Bang:
“Our Pleasure Garden sets Jacob van Eyck’s exquisite blooms in a new environment. We collected material from Melbourne to Bermagui, Utrecht to Kristiansand, back and forth to Lambley Gardens – an oasis of beauty hidden in the Victorian goldfields: improvised melodies and textures, birdsong from the places in which we worked, and Jacob’s own carillon, still joyously played today.”
Pleasure Gardenwas first created as a garden installation, embedded (literally) within the glorious botanical worlds of Lambley Gardens (Victoria) and Vaucluse House (Sydney), the latter as part of the 2016 Sydney Festival.
- 1. Lichen
- 2. Amarilli
- 3. Granite
- 4. Her Nest
- 5. One Tree Hill
- 6. Amarilli variations II – III
- 7. Whipbird
- 8. Bee Halo
- 9. Marie
- 10. Bermagui Dawn
- 11. Daphne
- 12. Feather Storm
- 13. Amarilli variation IV
- 14. Pale Blue Evenings