401Concerts 10 De Nieuwe KHL Amsterdam

401Concerts10Logo320good2Sunday January 14, 2018
De Nieuwe KHL
Oostelijke Handelskade 44, Amsterdam
Info/reservations: 020-779-1575
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Begins: 4 PM
Entrance: euro 15

Sopraan Barbara Schilstra
Tenor Hendrik Vonk
pianist Wolter Willemsen

On January 14, 2018,  401DutchOperas will perform in De Nieuwe KHL with soprano Barbara Schilstra, heldentenor Hendrik Vonk and pianist Wolter Willemsen. Our Amsterdam debut combines lements of our Dutch hedentenor repertoire recording project with our research in the Royal Collections and our upcoming Jan brandts Buys Festial in September. From the Royal collections we present exerpts of the grand opera Le roi de bohème (1852) by court composer of WIllem III, Charles van der Does. Throughout 2018 we will present the results of our ongoing research into DUtch opera also in De Nieuwe KHL, as part of their own programming.

130COncert4401Concerts Nr. 4 (Audio)
Download: € 7.99
401ConIV130401Concerts Nr. 1 (Video)
Download: € 7.99



Charles van der Does: Le roi de bohème (1852)

Act I-10 'Au destin... Adieu mon pays' (Georges) (HV)

Willem Henri Lucas: Béla?  (1893)

'Non mes amis' (Air de Farkas) (HV)

Marinus Cornelis van de Rovaart: Der verwunschene Prinz (1895)

'Ich habe wohl gehofft' (Act III-13, Lied Prinz) (HV)

Cornelis Dopper: Frithjof (1895)

‘Hoor mij aan voor gij beslist’ (Act II, Frithjof) (HV)

Marinus Cornelis van de Rovaart: Liefde (1899)

'Hoort een krijgsman staat voor de deur' (Lied) (HV)

Jan Brandts Buys – Hero und Leander (1929)

‘Hier liege du’ (Act III, Hero) (BS)
‘Ha, was ist das? Zurück!’ (Act III, BS-HV)

Jan Brandts Buys – Ulysses (1932)

‘Jahre, Monde, Stunden, Tage’ (Act I, Penelope) (BS)

401DutchOperas in De Nieuwe KHL

KHL320bFrom the outside one would not immediately guess that the charming café-restaurant De Nieuwe KHL includes a truly magnificent art déco concert hall, including a stage and a wing. The concert hall stands apart from the restaurant room, which is not to say walking from the concert hall through the door to the restaurant could not bring some pleasant surprises: their kithen is French based with excursions into Latin-American cuisine.  Classic and exotic – one can taste the history of that famous location at the Oostelijke Handelskade in the menu. The monumental building was constructed a century ago as the coffee/luchroom of the Lloyd personel. Captains, crew and international passengers came here for coffee, beer and a small bite.  Jan Krabben of De Nieuwe KHL: 'The wonderful backroom now is a stage for musicians, cabaret artists, stand up comedians, storytellers of all kinds, cooks... anyone who can offer our guests a wonderfull afternoon or evening. We also rent it for parties, meetings and other activities. With offering the 401DutchOperas in our own programming, we want to contribute to the preservation of Dutch national musical heritage, which holds many as yet unheard treasures. This  fits the profile of our historic location and our mission to provide a safe haven for all sorts of music and entertainment. And perhaps Dutch Opera brings a new type of visitors to blend in with to the audience we currently have.'

Partners: De Nieuwe KHL, Nederlands Muziek Instituut, Dutch Royal Collections, Stichting ParDOES, Stichting G.H.G. von Brucken Fock

Charles van der Does: Le roi de bohème (1852)

320DoesCharles van der Does (1817-1878) was court composer of King Willem III. Van der Does composed during the second period of the French Theater in The Hague. Typically his name has compeltely vanished from oublic memory, even within circles of musicologists. This is remarkable since there are hardly any operas known from this period and the ones that we know by Van Bree or Ten Cate are for the larger part lost. Van der Does thereagainst has all his nine operas surviving, in part in the Nederlands Muziek Instituut and in part in the Dutch Royal Collections.  Most of his operas are opéra comiques in the style of Auber. Le roi de bohème is Van der Does' only grand opéra, and as such it is of majestic proportions. The music is on the one side closer to the school of Auber then to the school of Meyerbeer, although the airs of Georges that we perform in our concert decidely anticipate the mellifluous romanticism of Gounod.  In Le roi de bohèmehe the tenor, Georges, has at least half a dozen airs, the msot beutiful three of which we have selected for our recording programme. The story is nearly the same to the plot of Verdi's Il finto Stanislao or 'King for a day'. In this case goat herd Georges switches places with his spitting image, the King Stanislav, who has mysteriously dissapreared. It is the King's hand who pushes Georges to get along with the complot, since this Machiavellian cousellor beleives he can use georgs as a pon to serve his own ambitions. At fist even the Queen buys the return of the King, although eventually the truth is revealed. By then Georges has proven himself more popular than the real king, and when he explains that he only went along with the switch in order to save the Queen, whom he loves, she places the crown on his head once again, and proclaims him King of Bohemia.

Willem Henri Lucas: Béla? (1893)

henriLucasWillem Henri Lucas (1858-1936) was active as opera and concert conductor in Grenoble, Antwerp, Le Mans and Namurs from 1890 to 1896. Apart frfrom a hand full of insignificent chamber music and occasion works we still have the compelted first act of his unfinished opera Béla? (1893) and the operetta Le voyage aux Alpes (1897). A young Lucas started composing Béla? with much enthusiasm and drive, but he enver passed beyond act I, or so it seems, judging from the manuscript in the archives of the NMI. Perhaps he had hoped that the competed first act would land him a contract for the compelte work to be performed somewhere in the French language province town where he was then conducting. Musically he actually had a lot going for him, judging from the torso and the splendid air de Farkas, which we perform here. However, the plot was shaky and harked bck to the 1820's wheres the fashion of the day demanded verism, be it Italian or French. The plot: after meeting the girl of his dreams a gypsy bandit leader Farkas wants to become a decent person and stop robbing and killing everyone on his path. He takes his gang to the harvest celebrations where he wants to cout her, but mes them promise to behave themselves. In order to stay incognito, he will present himelf there under the pseudonum 'Béla'. All this he recalls to his gang in the air de Farkas, a wondrful and inspired tenor aria  which has a fire glowing from withi. What a great pity that Lucas did not complete the work!

Cornelis Dopper: Frithjof (1895) en Wilhelm Ratcliff (1900)

DopperSL9USAThe composer Cornelis Dopper is best known as one of the golden engraved Dutch composers in the balustrades of the Royal Concertgebouw Amsterdam. During his career he worked alongside such celebrities as Richard Strauss and Gustav Mahler. His work as second conductor of the Concertgebouw Orchestra 1909-1931 is well documented. As a composer he is renowned mostly for his ‘Ciaconna gotica’ and the ‘Rembrandt’, ‘Amsterdam’ and ‘Zuiderzee’ symphonies. Of the four operas that he composed not a note is remembered today, even though De blinde van Casteel Cuillé (The blind girl of Castle Cuillé) (1894) and Het eerekruis (1902) were largely succesful in their days. 401DutchOperas plans to disclose these operas along with Dopper’s Fritjhof (1895), William Ratcliff (1900) and Mei-droom (May dream) (1918) by means of performing arias duets and ensembles from these titles and making them available through downloadable recordings.

previously we have presented DopperDe blinde van Casteel Cuillé (1894), a work that landed the then 19 years old composer a remarkable succes with the Dutch Opera of Cornelis van der Linden. At 401Concerts 5 we first presented the impressive tenoraria 'hoort mij aan' from Frithjof and the 'Prelude' to William Ratcliff. A world of diffference in terms of music. After the succes of De blinde van Casteel Cuillé Dopper abandoned the formula of merely presenting the most succesful forms and fashions of opera in the past 50 years. He now deemed himself fit for the real thing and modelled himself on one hit opera only: Wagners Lohengrin. From DopperFrithjof it becomes clear that Lohengrin did not just visit the 'lichter Tempel' in Montsalvat, but that the entire Holy grail myth might as well fit the Greek temple of Frithjof's dreams! Of course, epigonism, a label easily given to many Dutch (and other) composers. However, to date no one has any recollection of what presicely these epigones sounded like. I am convinced that a concert with Dutch Wagner epigones in the Amsterdam Concertgebouw would currently sell out, since there is huge latent curiosity after this music, along with Flemish Wagner epigones such as Paul Gilson, Brenngier and the young August De Boeck. Their strong points are usually to be seen in a more modern and refined and versatile grade of late romantic orchestration. It is absolutely sure that such a concert must include the hauntingly beutiful monolgue of Frithjof, 'Hoor mij aan'. Because of difficulties within Cornelis van der Linden's financially plagued Dutch Opera Frithjof remained uperformed in 1894. Only some highlights were later performed, once, in concert. This taught Dopper his Wagner lesson and afterwards he followed yet another path. The prelude of William Ratcliff is not so esily defined in musical terms. the peic does however capture the supernatural atmosphere that revolves around the damned Ratcliff, who is compelled to kill all suiters to his beloved Maria. By 1900, Dopper's William Ratcliff, on the literal text of Heine himself (Mascagni en Cui used the Italian and Russian translations) already stands firmly in the early 20th century.  We plan to record also vocal parts of this fascinating opera, which would make a dream title for a cd label such as CPO!

Marinus Corelis van de Rovaart: Der verwunschene Prinz (1895) – Liefde (1899)

320rovaartVery little is known about Marinus Cornelis (MC) van de Rovaart (1871-1939) and even less so about his operas. In his Sturm und Drang-years he had significant succes in Austria with his opera Die verwunschene Prinz (1894). Such an international succes was no small accomplishemnt for a Dutch composer. Die verwunschene Prinz is also a very special work, that we will disclose in a number of excerpts over the years. On his operas Der Gnomenkönig/The Dwarf King (1897) and Liebe/Liefde (1899) little else is known than what the notes in the manuscript scores kept in the NMI tell us. Van de Rovaart proves himself as a composer of tuneful arias with influences of folk song, opera comique and operetta, as in the aria 'Hoort een krijger staat voor de deur'. In this piece from Liebe a soldier asks a girl if he can enter her room, since he is about to go to war and not sure if he will return. Interesting for our Wagner epigone/parodies plan is that Van de Rovaart also composed a Wagner parody, Loh en Grien, of which we have the score. The Wagner parody enre of course cannot fail to be presented on a concert of Wagner epigones.

Jan Brandts Buys: Hero und Leander (1929) – Ulysses (1932)

JanBrabdtsBuysTenBokumHero staat op het punt tot priesteres van Afrodite gewijd te worden als Leander haar ziet en verliefd op haar wordt. Hij bezoekt haar ‘s nachts in de vuurtoren waar zij moet waken maar de priesters zien hem aan de voet van de vuurtoren en waarschuwen de hogepriester. Die vraagt de goden Leander te straffen. Deze struikelt daarop in de afdaling en verdrinkt in zee. Als Hero de andere ochtend ontdekt wat er is gebeurd wil ze sterven, om met Leander begraven te kunnen worden. Als de hogepriester dit weigert, stort zij zichzelf in zee. Het werk vond in de nasleep van de beurscrash op Wallstreet namelijk geen theater dat het aan durfde nemen. Er was sprake van een uitvoering in 1931 te München maar daar lijkt men het risico te groot te hebben gevonden om onder voornoemde omstandigheden een ernstig werk op te voeren van een componist die alleen succes in komisch aangelegde opera’s had gekend. Na een try-out in 401Recordings II vindt de wereldpremière van twee centrale hoogtepunten plaats op 14 januari 2018 in De Nieuwe KHL, Amsterdam, met Barbara Schilstra als hero en Hendrik Vonk als Leander en Wolter Willemsen op piano.

Brandts Buys voltooide zijn laatste opera Ulysses op 10 juni 1932, maar slaagde er niet meer in het komische werk bij leven uitgevoerd te krijgen. Hij overleed op 7 december 1933 te Salzburg. Pas in maart 1937 volgde een speciale radiouitvoering in het kader van onbekende opera’s, waarvan de opnamen helaas verloren zijn gegaan. Volgens Jan ten Bokums biografie over de componist leeft deze opera bij de gratie van een serie bijzondere hoogtepunten. Het zijn natuurlijk precies deze stukken die tijdens het operaconcert op het Jan Brandts Buys Festival van 21-23 september 2018 zullen worden uitgevoerd. De live wereldpremière van een van deze hoogtepunten vond op 14 januari 2018 plaats in De Nieuwe KHL.

401DutchOperas anthology in progress

The 401DutchOperas concert with Dutch operatic treasures from the archives of the Nederlands Muziek Instituut is organized in the wake of René Seghers' work on an anthology of Dutch and Flemish operas. Because there have been more than 400 Dutch operas composed since 1678, of which almost no recordings of any kind exist, Seghers and co-organizer Anthony van der Heijden decided to organize concerts with highlights of these forgotten Dutch and Flemish operas. On the website 401DutchOperas.com these concerts will be made available. Thus progress on the book and bringing the music back to life goes hand in hand. Seghers is arts editor of Villa d’Arte, feature author for Luister Classical Music Magazine, and author of the Dutch language biography of Jacques Brel, the American biography of Franco Corelli, the jubilee book of the International Vocal Competition 's-Hertogenbosch and their archives website 401ivca.com, and the 401DutchDivas website

Cooperation with Netherlands Music Institute

Especially for the OBA The Hague concert all scores of the operas performed have been digitalized and made performance ready. Seghers: 'These were all handwritten scores, largely even full orchestra scores from our long-time partner, the Nederlands Muziek Instituut, which then had to be reduced to piano-vocal scores. It is from this intense collaboration over a period of seven years that the project and the concerts as such became possible at all, which now enables us to hear the music from this fascinating period in the history of Dutch art again.'


The concert is downloadable from the 401Concerts 4 downloadpage.