An animated symphony film in which the music dictates the storyline, written for Asko | Schönberg.
The film Small World started off as an orchestral score. The starting point of this collaboration was that film director Casper Braat would make a storyboard based on what he hears in the 20″ piece.
In the beginning of 2022, I wrote an orchestral piece for the ensemble Asko | Schönberg. The premise of the project was simple: to give younger audiences an appealing way to ‘follow’ modern orchestral music in a film setting. I wanted the score to be rich in contrasts and be short-segmented, as I figured this would benefit the flow of the film. I drew inspiration from Stravinsky and Bernstein in this piece.
So the idea of ‘reversed fim-scoring’ was born: in ‘Small World’, the storyline dictates the flow of the movie. Director Casper Braat worked together with animator Gideon van der Stelt in making a film starring Josh the Mouse, who is an actual mouse. During the film, Josh gets into all kinds of crazy adventures.
The film premiered during the Grachtenfestival 2022 in Amsterdam, in the Eye Film Museum, under the baton of Clark Rundell.
'... with beautiful cross-connections and thematic links. Surprisingly well-arranged for the seventeen musicians of Asko | Schönberg.'
**** - Trouw, august 15th 2022
A composition for five reed players and sampler about the biggest Dutch political scandal of the decade.
The Childcare Benefits Scandal is a huge political scandal in the Netherlands. Two national newspapers shed a light on the Dutch tax authority falsely accusing thousands of parents as fraudulent for years, forcing them to repay fictional debts, often surmounting to tens of thousands of euro’s and ultimately culminating in kids being placed out of their homes, divorces and even suicides. It was later unearthed that the tax authority had acted on racist policy.
In 2022, I was granted the Keep an Eye Production Prize to write a composition about this, which would premiere at the Wonderfeel Festival. With this help, I was able to write protest music using voice samples of the politicians responsible and the politicians who helped bring this to justice, Renske Leijten and Pieter Omtzigt. I drew inspiration from Steve Reich’s Different Trains, which also has a socio-political angle.
Leading up to the premiere the performance was widely picked up in national media, as this scandal is still very much active. Mrs. Leijten and mr. Omtzigt were both present at the premiere and they received the first prints of the score, which was dedicated to the both of them.
I wrote the 31 minute piece on nothing but anger and coffee.
An immersive audio composition for an exhibition questioning the concept of growth at the Malmö Museer in Sweden
Growth is an omnipresent thing, but should it always be the goal? In ‘Growth’, lead exhibition designer Lucandrea Baraldi sheds a light on the many ways we can look at growth, drawing inspiration from nature, but also from building structures and beckoning cats.
In the beginning of 2022, I was asked by exhibition design agency KossmanndeJong to help out in making a composition for this 7-piece exhibition. I decided I wanted the whole thing to sound like 7 separate compositions, but sit in the exhibition space as if it were one whole composition. Every ten minutes, a musical cue would be synched in all compositions, making known that the 7 pieces are actually all linked.
Technically, this created some hurdles. Together with technician Daan van der Spek, we set out to build 7 separate music sources, using speakers and raspberry pi’s connected to one dedicated WiFi-spot. Each source played it’s own music file (c.q. composition), but because of the WiFi-linkage we could make sure the cue would be in synch across all seven speakers.
A composition about humanity’s upcoming journey to the Red Planet. About human curiosity, hardship and the future.
In 2019, I was approached by the Grachtenfestival Amsterdam to become their New Maker (‘Nieuwe Maker‘), which meant I’d collaborate together with the festival for the next two years, making one production each year. MARS: was the first one, premiering in theatre the Meervaart in Amsterdam in august 2021.
A musical odyssey to the fourth planet, in which the human urge to discover is a central theme. A rocket launch, a months-long journey in an enclosed capsule and the loneliness of an existence on a dead planet. What remains of our humanity, tucked in between all this technology? Why do we even want to do this? And what will our music sound like on Mars?
8 horn players, 3 singers, piano, bass, vibraphone and drums, supported by a visual artist take the audience on their journey and give a musical ode to an historic event, before it has even happened.
Libretto by Frank Siera
Visuals by Bas ten Berge
'music like a mighty stroke of lightning in the universe'
**** - Trouw, august 19th 2021
A three-dimensional way to experience the magical world of Haruki Murakami.
MURAKAMI is a magical journey through the universe of Japanese star author, in music, vocals and visuals and was written for the ensemble Ikarai, which teamed up with vocalist Sanne Rambags (winner Edison 2019) and visual artist V&J.
Fish that fall out of the sky like rain, talking cats, philosophizing prostitutes, places where time does not exist and thoughts that become truth. Based on texts written by writer Frank Siera, Ikarai grasps the magic of Murakami in a cinematic combination of classical and jazz music. The players bring Murakami’s colorful and associative thoughts to life in their own art forms.
In MURAKAMI, the ensemble Ikarai lets the audience enter Murakami’s mind. Improvisation, composition and storytelling fuse together into a new type of concert: a writer’s world, set to music.
MURAKAMI premiered in the Bimhuis in september of 2020. Afterwards, it toured all through The Netherlands, partially amidst lockdown, giving concerts at amongst others De Doelen, TivoliVredenburg, November Music Festival and Festival Oranjewoud.