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Composer of the month

JAN BRANDTS BUYS FESTIVAL ZUTPHEN
21-23 SEPT 2018

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From Friday September 21 until Sunday September 23 401DutchOperas organizes the JAN BRANDTS BUYS FESTIVAL ZUTPHEN 2018, on the occasion of the composer's 150th birthday. Brandts Buys (1868 -1933) was (and remains to date) the most successful Dutch opera composer in history. Since its 1916 premiere his opera Die Schneider von Schönau has been performed over 1000 times throughout Germany, Austria, Hungary, Switserland and the Netherlands. Operas such as Der Mann im Mond and Micarême had international success as well. Stars such as Richard Tauber created his works at the most important German stages. Our Brandts Buys Festival Zutphen features a shimmering line up of Dutch opera stars, starting with the Zutphen born diva Johannette Zomer, who is featured in both the opera recital on Saturday September 22 in Hanzehof as in the Song recital on Sunday September 23. Cello player Jeroen den Herder and the Cello Festival are featured with a guest performance. Organ player Frank van Wijk plays the mighty Bader organ of the recently restaurated Walburgis Church. Apart from solo organ works of Brandts Buys there are also songs for organ performed by our biggest opera voices. There's an exhibition with a recital including songs composed by 5 generations Brandts Buys. There's a recital with his music for piano including all Festival pianists. The Festival discloses a veritable survey of Brandts Buys's oeuvre 1891-1932: live in front of the audience and then for the rest of the world by means of the cd-issues that we will publish of the recorded performances.

Programme & ticketlinks

Opera of the month

JAN VAN GILSE'S THIJL
LIVE in UTRECHT !!!!

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From June 30 until July 17 the former air force base Soesterberg is transformed into the spectacular decor for a staged performance of Jan van Gilse’s legendary opera opera Thijl (1940). Under supervision of eight Utrecht based students an enormous decor will be build, considting of sand sculptures, on a stage where no less than 150 soloists and young musicians will perform Van Gilse's unequivocal masterpiece. The powerfull baritone Anthony Heidweiller sings the title role, the versatile soprano Aylin Sezer is Nele. Wim Trompert signed for the stage direction. A festival with more music, lectures, workshops and a visit to the National Dutch Military Museum completes the programme.

There can be no doubt that Thijl is th absolute masteriece of Dutch opera. The composition is brimming with rhythms and melodies that are based in Dutch folklore (withouth ever turning things into a folk-opera). The tunes and the libretto of this Dutch/Flemish national hero Thijl are based on our 80-years-war with Spain. The score is overwhelming, both in musical terms as in terms of demanding an enormous orchestra and an almost impossible number of over 50 soloists.  Thijl truly bridged time from the 80-years-war with Spain and the world of today. Van Gilse completed the opera in 1940, when the Germans had just invaded the Netherlands. Van Gilse himself ultimately became part of the artists' resistance, lost his son in the process and died in hiding in 1944. Among the few belongings that he dragged from hiding to hiding places was... the manuscript score of Thijl!

Lees verder

STYLE

STIJLThis website will in time attempt to answer the question if there is 'a Dutch style'. As surprising as it may sound to those coming from countries with a living opera tradition, this is an open question in The Netherlands. The reason: from those operas composed before 1945, there is hardly a single note available in terms of recordings. Scores are partly lost or survive only fragementary, others have to be deciphered from obscure handwritings.

ANTHOLOGY

Accent401DutchOperas is now initiating a book that will include all ca. 250 major Dutch operas composed with extensive plot summarys and musical descriptions. Their composers will be introduced, the genesis and performance history of their works shall be examined, along with a stylistic analyses and an introduction to the highlights of those scores.

An introductory chapter will provide a summary of the history of Dutch opera from its beginnings until its present state of affairs. This should include a survey of the rise and fall of The Netherlands' many opera companies since the 1680s.

Volunteers/ stagiaires

Hanslick401DutchDivas.com is looking for volunteers / stagiaires that would like to contribute to the expansion of this website by means of adding new biographies and/ or editing biographies / discographies etcetera. You can apply through This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

AIM

Scene from Peter-Jan Wageman's opera Legende (Legend)(© 2011 DNO-Marco Borgggreve)Our aim is to restore the history of Dutch Operas. Since none of these operas are currently known, we use as much audio visual material as possible, to bring Dutch Operas back to life. The success of our aim is determined by the accessibility of these operas.

401DutchOperas should surprise, and make one curious after these works, their composers and their artistic environment. Only in that way can we hope to achieve our ultimate goal: the revival of Dutch operatic tradition!