Stadsarchief Amsterdam - 400 years of Sweelinck

The city of Amsterdam named one of its squares after the painter Rembrandt, one of its lovely parks after the poet Vondel, but the most important composer of the 17th century had to make do with a bust on the Concert Hall gable. This was later compensated for with a likeness on the 25-guilder note, but this did not bring him the same fame as his contemporaries enjoyed. To put this right, Amsterdam City Archive is holding an exhibition in their beautiful Treasury.

This exhibition includes some of Sweelinck’s ballot books, paintings of him and the beautiful painted harpsichord valve that Sweelinck acquired on behalf of the city of Amsterdam. The acoustics of the treasury inspired us to create an audio installation use a psalm Sweelinck set to music. This four-part piece is sung with four singers in four corners singing as one. Musical visitors are challenged to join in using the musical notation provided.

Client: Stadsarchief Amsterdam
Exhibition design & animation: Synergique
Choir: Hemony Ensemble
Recording & sound design: Matthijs Koster
Studio: Lab³