On this page you will find a colourful collection of Renaissance composers. Below you can read some biographics, followed by a link to the music.
If you are impatient or eager… Go to the Music directly!
Robert Johnson (1583 – 1683) was one of the important composers in the Elizabethan era in sixteenth/seventeenth century England. Besides, he was a member of the theatre company The Black Friars.
John Johnson (1545 – 1594) was a lutenist and composer at the court of Elizabeth I. He was highly acclaimed there, witness the fact that his widow got a piece of land after his death. He is considered to be the founder of the English Lute School that had John Dowland as its most famous representative.
Writing a biography of Thomas Robinson is not an easy job, because we do not have a lot of facts about his life. His life span, 1560 – 1610, is historical speculation. Fortunately, he left a few clues on the front pages of his compositions that enable to date a few facts. Thus, we know that he worked as a music instructor at the Danish court in Copenhagen and Elsinore. His most famous work, The Schoole of Musicke, was published in 1603 and was considered a standard instructional work for instruments such as the lute, the bandore and the viola da gamba.
The French composer and lutenist Nicolas Vallet (ca. 1553 – 1626) was a Huguenot and was persecuted because of his belief. He avoided political problems in France after the St. Bartholomew Day in 1572, seeking refuge in Amsterdam, an imposing metropole in those days. There he established a dancing school and formed an ensemble that played at weddings and other festivities. Unfortunately, his business was not always successful, causing him to lose all his possessions including his clothing. Fortunately for him this mishap was not structural, later on the financial tide turned for the better. In Amsterdam, Vallet published amongst others Le Secret des Muses in 1613, an interesting collection that provides a good impression of the lute culture in the Low Countries. The collection includes arrangements of popular songs, religious hymns and various dance forms.