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Kathryn Cok’s disc is a selection of personal favourites by Peter Philips (1560/1–1628) and Jan Pieterszoon Sweelinck (1562–1621). Establishing themselves in Antwerp and Amsterdam respectively, the two men undoubtedly met in 1593 when Philips travelled to Amsterdam, and their works show stylistic as well as historical links.

It is a pleasure to listen to Cok’s recording. The quality of sound from her Ruckers 1638 copy by Titus Crijnen in 1999 makes compelling listening, and her understanding of the virginalist music is exemplary. She plays with assurance and intelligence, allowing the music to breathe with well-defined phrases.

A pleasing mix of pavans, galliards and variations include some of Sweelinck’s best-known works. Performances of Onder een linde groen, More Palatino, Est-ce Mars and Mein junges Leben hat ein End are thoughtful, with virtuosic semiquaver passages always poised and elegant. Philips’ Pagget and Passamezzo Pavans and Galliards are interspersed with his Pavan of 1580 from the Fitzwilliam Virginal Book and Sweelinck’s Pavana Philippi, based on the same tune directly linking the two composers together.

Katharine May Read the full review on Agora Classica


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