Elise Menkhorst, our new board member

The Donemus Foundation welcomes Elise Menkhorst as new board member. She is a lawyer and specialist in the fields of intellectual property law and commercial contracts. She has been part of Clairfort from the time of its establishment in October 2017. She developed the current publishing contract of Donemus when it was still part of MCN. Donemus is very honoured to have her in the board…   

She provides advice and litigates in the fields of law governing trading names, trademarks, copyrights, designs and advertising, amongst others. Elise helps both Dutch and international businesses and acts in relation to domestic and cross-border disputes. She liaises with designers and businesses about securing the best possible protection for their rights. She also helps various parties in the case of an infringement. This may involve either enforcing rights in relation to other parties who exercise them in the absence of consent or where such parties are themselves called to account.

She is also active in drafting and assessing general terms and conditions. Apart from this, she is in her element when negotiating and drawing up commercial contracts, such as collaboration agreements and contracts providing for the assignment and exercise of intellectual property rights.

Elise studied at the University of Leiden and at the UC Hastings College of the Law in San Francisco. At the time Elise started out with the intellectual property and IT firm, De Gier | Stam & Advocaten, in Utrecht and later worked as part of the intellectual property practice of Banning Advocaten in Den Bosch. She has been involved in Clairfort since its establishment. She is an enthusiastic, accessible and highly motivated lawyer, and dedicates herself to obtaining the best outcome for her clients with the aid of strategy and expertise. Elise regularly gives talks in her fields of expertise and is a member of the Beneluxvereniging voor Merken- en Modellenrecht [Benelux Trademark and Design Law Association] (BMM) and the Netherlands Advertising Law Association [Vereniging voor Reclamerecht] (VvRr), amongst other things.

Elise Menkhorst at Clairfort

More info about the Donemus Board

Bernard Benoliel

Bernard Benoliel was born in Detroit Michigan in 1943 and grew up with his grandfather Bernardo Coppola, an Italian émigré, who after serving in the Canadian Army during the first World War, set up a restaurant in Detroit. Benoliel’s mother was a professional dancer, for a while on the New York stage. His father, a French citizen, immigrated to New York from Marseilles in 1910. Benoliel studied at the Detroit Institute of Music Art, piano with Margaret Mannebach and trumpet with Elmer Janes, both members of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra. His desire to be a composer was formed early – from a love of Beethoven’s music and life. He read composition at the University of Michigan under Ross Lee Finney, a pupil of Berg, and later attended extramural studies at Juilliard and the Manhattan School of Music. A more salient influence on his own music was the two years he spent as a private pupil of Stefan Wolpe from 1968 to 1970. He used to say he went to Wolpe not to learn serialism but because he had been a pupil of Busoni and it is Busoni who informs the dark matter in Benoliel’s style. In 1969 Benoliel won a Bennington Composer’s Conference Award and in 1970 a Tanglewood Fellowship where an early String Quartet was premiered. A year later he gave up his librarian position at G. Schirmer and moved to England. Why? “To write a symphony before I am thirty”. He also wanted to study more British music; he achieved both aims and apart from a brief sojourn in New York in 1977, Benoliel lived in Europe. In 1986 he purchased a canal flat in Amsterdam which he used as a composing studio for the next thirty years. From 2001 he was a Dutch resident and died in Amsterdam on 2nd March 2017.

Benoliel was best known in England as the Administrator of the R.V.W. Trust (founder Ralph Vaughan Williams), 1978-2000 and the Artistic Director of R.V.W. Limited, the company set up to look after RVW’s own music, 1983-2001. He proved a staunch supporter of young composers, electronic music, and neglected music by Vaughan Williams and his contemporaries. In all, usually with the estate’s financial support, he was responsible for recording more than 40 CDs of British music, the majority with the Four London Orchestras. Major projects included the complete symphonies of Hubert Parry and Roberto Gerhard. Perhaps the project though, of which he was most proud was the premier recordings of Herbert Howells’ great choral works, the “Missa Sabrinensis” and “Stabat Mater” with the LSO and Rozhdestvensky.

Benoliel composed slowly and revised extensively. From 1968 to 1998 his first nine opus works were all performed and all broadcast either by the BBC or Dutch Radio. In 1982 Sir Edward Downes and the BBC Philharmonic gave the premier of his Symphony ‘Sinfonia Cosmologica’, which Bayan Northcott called “awesomely transcendental”. In the 90s Gaudeamus and NCRV promoted a series of performances in the Netherlands of his Piano Sonata No. 2 after Gericault’s Fragments Anatomiques, with Kees Wieringa, and his String Quartet, with the Mondriaan Quartet. The Sonata and the Nonet ‘Boanerges’, were subsequently featured at Huddersfield Festivals. Listeners however, rarely had the opportunity to hear his works as a group or in context. He retired from England in 2001 and devoted much of his energy to a small property company he set up in 1996. His abiding interest in interior design and an acute sense of timing ensured he survived the 2008 economic crash relatively unaffected. He died leaving properties in Spain, France and the Netherlands.

He continued to compose; in all, he produced fifteen opus works. These include the Symphony, the String Quartet and three Piano Sonatas. In addition, he completed a cycle of four experimental works featuring an amplified solo stringed instrument and amplified antiphonal instrumental forces. These include his magnum opus the fifty-minute Infinity-Edge, A Transcendental Requiem, which reached its final form in 2014. The work is scored for amplified violin, organ concertante, chorus, amplified semi-chorus and orchestra. Invoking Sonic Stone features a setting of the Veni Creator Spiritus and observations on architecture by Osip Mandalstam, scored for two voices, amplified viola and an ensemble, including organ, piano and percussion. His last six works remained unperformed and un-promoted at the time of his death, largely by his own choice. However, over a period of several years, he worked with the technical staff of Donemus Publishing to produce a performing edition of all fifteen works. His final composition was a half-hour Organ Sonata completed in 2012. He never allowed any of his works to be released on commercial recordings.

He once wrote that he had a “Weltanschauung” and encouraged listeners to view his music in a philosophical context: especially with regard to the 19th century German philosophers – Schopenhauer and Nietzsche – and in America the transcendental poets – Emily Dickinson and Whitman, and the New England philosophers Thoreau and Emerson. He read and annotated the complete works of the 20th century philosophical psychologists C.G.Jung and D.H.Lawrence. He said that he viewed all these writers within the framework of Christ and the New Testament. He was baptised in the First Presbyterian Church of Detroit though in later life he was not a follower of any specific Christian sect.

Benoliel’s musical aesthetic was informed by Beethoven, whose life and works formed a bridge to his philosophical considerations. Most of the later composers, whom he loved and identified with, were influenced by Beethoven’s achievement: the German-French tradition, Berlioz, Bruckner, Brahms and Richard Strauss. The direct influences on his own idiom however, were Schoenberg, via Wolpe, Busoni, Varèse and Schriabin.

He worked extensively as a musicologist. In 1996 he was invited by ISIDA (University of Palermo) in celebration of their 40th anniversary to lecture on Szymanowski’s “King Roger” in the International Symposium “Time and Culture”. An extended version of the paper was published by ISIDA in 1997. In the same year his book Parry Before Jerusalem was published by Ashgate. His final project for the Vaughan Williams estate was the editing and publication of RVW’s early unpublished chamber music, completed in 2001. He considered these works superior to RVW’s early choral and orchestral music.

Benoliel was a chronic asthmatic from birth, and after 2009 his health began seriously to decline. He continued however, to remain in harness, insisting on walking the kilometre each way to the OLVG Hospital for treatment only days before he died of a lung infection. Appropriately his last meal was smoked salmon and a final bottle of champagne.
©Bruce Walter Roberts 2017
Executor of the Benoliel Estate.

Keuris, Kunst and Loevendie by the Score Collective

The Amsterdam Score Collective conducted by Ed Spanjaard will perform works by Jos Kunst, Theo Loevendie and Tristan Keuris e.o. at the Muziekgebouw aan ’t IJ on January 18th…   

A concert with Dutch music from the period between 1965 and 1980, a time in which the famous ensemble culture emerged. In 1980, Joël Bons, together with Score Collective conductor Ed Spanjaard, founded the Nieuw Ensemble, with which they built on Dutch ensemble music over many years. Bons was part of the birth of Score Collective and writes a new work especially for this concert.

Jos Kunst’s composition Insects gives the name to this program. The diversity and industry and sometimes the stubbornness of this class of arthropods symbolize the activity and productivity of the Dutch composers. In addition to Tristan Keuris‘ rarely performed work, one can enjoy the beautiful Six Turkish Folk Songs of Theo Loevendie. And also a brand new work by the youngest generation of composers.

More info about the concert

Arnon Grunberg and Simeon ten Holt

(Dutch article:) De veelgeprezen nieuwe roman van Arnon Grunberg is nu gratis te downloaden als Immer-app, een nieuwe manier van lezen op iPhone en iPad met daarbij Canto Ostinato van Simeon ten Holt…     

De app verdeelt de tekst van Goede mannen in afgemeten porties en brengt die soepel, stijlvol en overzichtelijk in beeld. Zo wordt het makkelijker om aandachtig te lezen, in korte en lange sessies.

Met koptelefoon op kun je tijdens het lezen luisteren naar Canto Ostinato van Simeon ten Holt, net zoals Grunberg dat deed tijdens het schrijven. Zo kom je extra in de sfeer. De app bevat bijna 3 uur muziek.

‘Dit leest echt heel prettig,’ zegt Grunberg er zelf over.

Het Immer-systeem is in Nederland ontwikkeld, gebaseerd op jarenlang onderzoek naar digitaal lezen door hybride schrijver Niels ’t Hooft.

De Goede mannen-app is gratis te downloaden in de App Store op iPhone en iPad, en bevat het eerste deel van het boek. De rest van het boek kun je kopen vanuit de app.

Lees meer

Download de app

World premiere Vanessa Lann – One/Life

On January 31th the piano quintet One/Life by Vanessa Lann will have its world premiere by Jack Liebeck, Alexandra Raikhlina, Philip Dukes, Gemma Rosefield and Katya Apekisheva. This premiere will be at Sage Hall 2, The Sage, Gateshead (UK)…   

This work was commissioned for the closing concert of the Brundibár Arts Festival in Newcastle and Gateshead, UK. Launched in 2016, the annual Brundibár Arts Festival is the only recurring British festival dedicated to artists who were victims of the Holocaust. In addition to celebrating the work of those artists murdered or who perished, the Festival regularly commissions a new composition as a message of hope in times of adversity.

This concert is dedicated to the memory of Hanni Begg (1929-2017) who was torn from home as a child but narrowly escaped deportation. She was the only family member to survive the war. Hanni was also a keen supporter of the Festival from its inception.

More info

Jan Hage performs Jan Vriend – Jets d’orgue

On Saturday evening, January 26th, organist Jan Hage will perform the complete organ cycle ‘Jets d’orgue’ at the ‘Orgelpark’ in Amsterdam…   

‘Jets d’orgue’ must be taken quite literally: an organ is a fountain of thousands of pipes spraying its sounds through the space around it.  The organ has always fascinated me, especially because of the acoustical space it usually finds itself in, which I consider as the resonance body of the instrument, or rather: its element. I also enjoy the challenge of bringing a huge machine to life. An organ resembles a big airplane, an apparently clumsy assembly of bits and parts as long as it stands on the ground. To get it off the ground requires the sort of skill and sophistication the crew of a big airplane needs. In fact, Jets d’orgue requires such a crew: the two assistants at the stops are as important as the organist.

The display and rhythm of changing colours is as essential as the movement of pitches. Part 1 consists of 3 Jets. Each Jet is followed by (i.e. channeled into) a section of homophony, 2-layered polyphony and 3-layered polyphony respectively. And each Jet is concluded by a special organ effect, which celebrates a particular characteristic of organ-playing. In this case Jet 1 is concluded by a field of garlands; Jet 2 by a heterophony and Jet 3 by a set of gestures. The heterophonies especially are designed to interfere with the domination of the octave interval in the coupling of different footages.

(Jan Vriend)

More info at the Orgelpark

Jets d’orgue at Donemus:

Max Knigge – To the Lighthouse

Music as a stream. Thoughts like water. Sudden mood swings and ideas that logically result from each other. A new composition specially made for cellist Nuala McKenna. She will perform the premiere on January 24th, and that will mark the start of her tour in the ‘Dutch Classical Talent’ series…   

The Dutch Classical Talent Tour & Award is a special program for young musicians. The four finalists are Rik KuppenMaya Fridman, Peter van Loenen and Nuala McKenna. They will go on tour at various concert halls.

The German-Irish cellist Nuala McKenna (1993) is known for her guts: she puts together daring programs and plays everything by memory. She will bring the premiere of Max Knigge’s ‘To the Lighthouse‘.

Click here for the tour dates

Max Knigge also wrote ‘Zacht & licht lacht ’t maangezicht‘. Ensemble Ludwig will perform the new version of this work on Friday, January 11th in TivoliVredenburg and on Tuesday 22th in Hilversum.

Read more at the website of Max Knigge


Joey Roukens with Elim Chan at the RPhO

On Friday, January 18th, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra will perform ‘Morphic Waves’ of Joey Roukens at TivoliVredenburg. Elim Chan will be the first female conductor on stage with this work of Joey Roukens…   

Morphic Waves’ is a symphony cast in one continuous 23-minute span, consisting of several subsections that organically morph into one another, not unlike Sibelius 7th Symphony, a piece which Joey Roukens adores. Throughout the piece one can hear wave-like elements, most notably in the dynamic swells (‘waves’ of crescendo and diminuendo or fade in/fade out) in all instruments, but also in the way the orchestral textures expand and contract. The piece is mainly about texture, color and harmony. The harmonies are mostly rather dark-hued, although the final 5 or so minutes are very serene and tender. The piece was written as part of Joey’s residency with the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra during the 2015-16 concert season.

Morphic Waves had its first performance on June 8th, 2016 at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam by the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra and conductor Marc Albrecht. Written with financial support of the Performing Arts Fund NL, it has been performed in The Netherlands, France, Italy and Russia.

Since then it has been performed in France, Italy and Russia.

Tickets for the concert

Listen to the recording at the Sacharov Festival; June 5th, 2018; by the Nizhny Novgorod Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Peter Biloen.

Bram van Camp at the Queen Elisabeth Competition

Bram Van Camp composed the compulsory work for the Semi-Final of the Queen Elisabeth Competition for violin 2019. This Scherzo – Bagatelle for violin and piano will be premiered by 24 semi-finalists in Flagey, Brussels. From May 6th till 11th…   

At each session of the Semi-Final, which consists of two parts, the public hears four different semi-finalists: the first two perform a Mozart concerto with the Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, conducted by Jean-Jacques Kantorow. The Mozart concerto will be chosen from Concertos K. 207 (No. 1 in B flat major), K. 218 (No. 4 in D major), and K. 219 (No. 5 in A major).

After the break, the other two perform their recitals, with piano accompaniment. The jury will choose one of two recital programmes proposed by the candidate, each including works of the candidate’s choice (containing one sonata for violin and piano), Eugène Ysaÿe’s 3rd and 4th movements of the Sonata in G minor, Op. 27 No. 1, and the compulsory work Scherzo – Bagatelle written especially for this year’s competition by Belgian composer Bram Van Camp.

Performance dates:

  • 06/05/2019 – 15h and 20h
  • 07/05/2019 – 15h and 20h
  • 08/05/2019 – 15h and 20h
  • 09/05/2019 – 15h and 20h
  • 10/05/2019 – 15h and 20h
  • 11/05/2019 – 15h and 20h

Bram Van Camp at Donemus

Queen Elisabeth Competition Violin 2019