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Paul Rans Ensemble  -  RUM  -  A la Rum

Paul Rans Ensemble:

Scenes of War - In Flanders Fields


Paul Rans: voice, sackbut

Philippe Malfeyt: lutes, guitar, hammered dulcimer

An Van Laethem: violin

Paul Van Loey: flutes, dulcian

Piet Stryckers: bass viol, cello, hurdy-gurdy

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“In Flanders Fields”: Michael Morpurgo, Coope Boyes & Simpson & the Paul Rans Ensemble 

Kings Place, London, 25-08-2014
'It will be hard for other centenary events to match this original and powerful blend of music and spoken word. This show deserves to be repeated.'

Robin Denselow in The Guardian 27-08-2014

Scenes of War

From the early Middle Ages to the 20th c. Flanders has been a favourite battlefield for its more powerful neighbours.

Songs about war and peace, from long ago and not so long ago.

The second half of this programme focuses on the First World War, featuring newly written songs as well as cabaret repertoire and anonymous songs from 1914-18. 

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Antwerp Songbook, 1544

In the 16th c. Antwerp was an important port and cosmopolitan city, attracting people from afar. The 1544 Antwerp Songbook gives a varied impression of a lively community, with a good deal of courting and drinking taking place, as well as singing political songs. Two years after publication this small songbook was put on the index of prohibited literature. Only one copy has survived.

Paul Rans produces a lyrical sound which also adds wonderful colours to lovers' laments.  Het Parool (Netherlands)

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Mit desen nyeuwen iare

Christmas in Flanders.

Many of the Dutch language Christmas 'carols' date from the Middle Ages, Renaissance or early Baroque. Old sources, however, do not only yield popular evergreens but also many unknown songs with plenty of charm and character, not only devotional but also with plenty of swing.

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Egidius waer bestu bleven

Songs from the Gruuthuse Ms.(Bruges, end 14th century.)  Songs dealing with the melancholy of unrequited love next to sexual escapades of monks and nuns; courtly love and sensuality; satire and drinking songs; friendship and faith. Some of these are classics of Middle-Dutch poetry but are very rarely heard as they were intended: as songs.

"Most of allI was touched by the simple and intense version of the Paul Rans Ensemble ... the intimate and restrained voice of Paul Rans who turns this poem into a poignant lament"

Guus Middag in Onze Taal (The Hague)

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De Geuzen / The 'Beggars'

Songs from the resistance to Spanish rule and the Catholic Church in the 16th century Low Countries, songs that could cost the author's or the singer's life.

It was customary to pick existing traditional tunes to sing to new lyrics and the singers chose the most popular and gripping tunes of the time.

A la RUM

Paul Rans: voice, sackbut

Marc Hauman: voice, guitar, percussion

Wiet Van de Leest: violin, voice

Jokke Schreurs: guitar, voice


A la Rum, City Park Festival, Brussels, 2010

... the wealth of vocal colours which A la Rum produced for songs such as 'Maschéro' and 'Duizend soldaten' (A thousand soldiers) was a rare plea for depth and roots. De Standaard

With Jokke Schreurs and Marc Hauman, Paul Rans and Wiet Van de Leest injected new life into Rum. 'Machéro' made you dream ...' De Morgen


Wiet Van de Leest - Paul Rans - Dirk Lambrechts

Wiet Van de Leest - Paul Rans

Wiet Van de Leest - Paul Rans -  Dirk Van Esbroeck

+ Juan Masondo en Vera Coomans


Rum, Café Gambrinus, Leuven, 1974


Rum, Café Gambrinus, Leuven, 2005

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The very first RUM, University auditorium, Leuven, 1969

Rans & Flagel

An Van Laethem: violin, voice

Piet Stryckers: bass viol, hurry-gurdy

Philippe Malfeyt: lutes, guitar, cittern, hammered dulcimer, voice

Paul Rans: voice, lute

Claude Flagel: voice, hurry-gurdy

Olle Geris: bagpipes, voice

Paul Van Loey: flutes, tin whistles, dulcian, voice

Drie oorlogstaferelen * Trois tableaux de guerre * Three Scenes of War
War and peace in the Low Countries and Northern France


Van Antwerpen tot Parijs / De la Seine à l’Escaut
A French-Flemish meeting of songs and music


Rans & Flagel in rehearsal

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