The ensemble Camerata Trajectina (‘Utrecht Musical Company’), established in 1974, has made its name through its continuing advocacy of Dutch music from the Middle Ages up through the 17th century. The heart of the ensemble consists of Hieke Meppelink (soprano), Nico van der Meel (tenor), Saskia Coolen (recorder), Erik Beijer (viola da gamba) and Louis Peter Grijp (lute and cittern). Sytse Buwalda (alto) and Marcel Moester (bass-baritone) complete the vocal quartet. They are supported by additional musicians when needed, such as on this CD the viola da gamba players Nick Milne en Cassandra Luckhardt.
Artistic leader Louis Peter Grijp has been researching Dutch music for 25 years at the Meertens Institute in Amsterdam, where he set up the enormous Dutch Song Database. In addition he is Professor of Dutch Song Culture at the University of Utrecht. His programs are usually built around literary or political and religious themes and figures from Dutch history. Camerata Trajectina has participated in many national commemorations, from the Union of Utrecht (1979) to John Calvin (2009), and also on the commemoration of the Frisian poet Gyxbert Japix (2003). Another of Camerata’s themes is the connection between music and art, including Jan Steen (1996, Amsterdam Rijksmuseum), Frans Hals (2004, Frans Hals Museum in Haarlem) and Hieronymus Bosch (De Zeven Zonden van Jeroen Bosch or The Seven Sins of Hieronymus Bosch, 2009), with the poet Gerrit Komrij. Camerata Trajectina devotes special attention to Dutch musical theater from the Golden Age, such as the first Dutch opera Bacchus, Ceres & Venus by Johan Schenck (performed at the Utrecht Early Music Festival in 2006), Starter’s sung farce Lijsje Flepkous (2007) and Hacquart’s semi-opera De Triomferende Min (‘The Triumphs of Love’) (2012).
Camerata Trajectina has given hundreds of concerts in the Netherlands (including many in the Utrecht Early Music Festival) and Flanders, in most of the other countries of Europe, in the United States and Canada, Mexico, the Middle East, Indonesia, Ghana, and Morocco. The history of the ensemble has been recorded in the jubilee book Van Peeckelharing tot Pierlala. 40 jaar oude/nieuwe liedekens door Camerata Trajectina by Jolande van der Klis (2014). Meanwhile Camerata has produced over 30 CDs, almost all on the Globe label. These can be ordered via www.cameratatrajectina. nl. Most of these can be listened to via the streaming service of the Dutch Song Database (www. liederenbank.nl).