The Rules of the Game

Thu 20 April 2017 Amsterdam Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ 20.15 >

Nieuw Ensemble
Ed Spanjaard dirigent
Guus Janssen piano

Theo Loevendie  Aulos (1972)
Karlheinz Stockhausen  Kreuzspiel (1951)
Tom Johnson  Five Notes for Five Instruments (2015) *
Misha Mengelberg  Beestebeest versus Hertie (1995)
Bruno Maderna  Serenata per un satellite (1969)
Guus Janssen  Pogo IV (1995) **
Gérard Pesson  Carmagnole (2015) *
Conlon Nancarrow/Joël Bons  Canon No 15 (1995)
* Dutch première, ** new version

Composers were always fascinated by games: Debussy wrote Jeux, Lutoslawski Jeux Vénétiens and ages before Cage let his works be influenced by the I Ching, Mozart already threw dices. With seven playful pieces this program brings together a colourful set of very different composers. The musicians play games; and in this concert even the audience participates. Will there be any winners?

Although games and art share an element of spontaneity, both also deal with rules and form. Structured games have rules that the players need to adhere to: if someone cheats, the game is ruined. For each piece the composer designs his own rules and plays his own game. The works of Guus Janssen and Misha Mengelberg were written for the NE in 1995. Tom Johnson's piece is a Dutch premiere.


Words of praise for Nomaden
review Het Parool 31-10-16 >
review de Volkskrant 5 stars 31-10-16 >
review NRC November Music 8-11-16 >
excerpt Nomaden from 1H10Min in Podium Radio 4 >
Het Parool interview with Joël Bons 27-10-16 >
de Volkskrant interview with Joël Bons 20-10-16 > 



The big change
The Nieuw Ensemble said goodbye to 2012 with The Ark of Joël, featuring the music of artistic director Joël Bons. The concert of 21 December in Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ received rave reviews:

5 stars in de Volkskrant >
4 stars in Het Parool > and NRC >

This event marked the end of a period of three decades of prosperity. As from 2013 we are without financial support from the state. What remains is the subsidy from the municipality of Amsterdam until 2016. The Big Change means that we will continue our work on a smaller scale. We moved the office from the Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ to our rehearsal studio at the Grasweg in Amsterdam Noord.