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A great 2020 with the Holland Festival, vacancies and aus LICHT Opera of the Year

The Holland Festival wishes you a happy 2020! The full programme of the 73rd festival edition will be announced on 11 February. You can already order tickets for the five productions below. Also in this newsletter: vacancies for a head of operations/controller, an employee development and interns for the communication & marketing and production departments; and aus LICHT named Opera of the Year 2019.... 

With a cohesive team, you win the World Cup. How the Holland Festival gagged all the cynics this year.

The 2019 Holland Festival was the best in decades. At least in the 25 years I have consciously witnessed it, I cannot recall a national festival that coupled so much impact with so much prestige. Whether visitor targets were met or not will be of no concern to me in this regard. It is, as Volkskrant colleague Hein Janssen once remarked,... 

Colin Benders plays Concertgebouw flat on closing night of memorable Holland Festival 2019

Stereo is primitive. Cinema operators have known that for a while, and so has anyone with a 7:1 set to go with their TV. Two speakers, no matter how good and big or small, remain two speakers. Now, of course, we also only have two ears, but they can place 360-degree sound thanks to some clever ribbing and our own smart brains. So sound should be... 

Four reasons to go to Pelléas et Mélisande #HF19

The Holland Festival, with its ample offerings, is sometimes its own competitor. For instance, I missed Turan Dokht and the premiere of Pelléas et Mélisande because I was at aus LICHT. To attend a performance of Debussy's only opera, I had to pass up Abd Al Malik's concert. - Cultural choice stress, frustrating on the one hand but a blessing on the other. Was it... 

Why, as a total layman, I did three days AUS LIGHT. And came out as a different person.

Music critics were unabatedly enthusiastic. And even opera lovers came, saw and were pleased. Of course, there was the chorus of monuments, led by a Flemish antiquity, who liked Maria Calllas better seventy years ago, but its members are only the necessary minority needed for something as unprecedented as AUS LICHT, the Magnum opus of the 72nd Holland Festival. Beforehand, it seemed... 

And Stockhausen saw that it was good - aus LICHT in Holland Festival #HF19

'Then he could split into three and was a singer, dancer and trumpet player,' says a girl on the screen prior to Michael's Jugend. She is one of the little children who tell at the beginning of each day what aus LICHT is about. A good find by Pierre Audi and his artistic team, because the universe that Karlheinz Stockhausen gives us... 

Podcast! Four strings live in four helicopters, for Stockhausen's 'Aus Licht': 'We still need to do something about those carrier pigeons in terms of planning.'

In 2016, the Holland Festival, De Nationale Opera, the Royal Conservatoire and the Stockhausenstiftung joined forces to stage the German avant-gardist's magnum opus at Amsterdam's Gashouder. Light far surpasses Wagner's Ring des Nibelungen in ambition and scale. Against the four full-length operas of his older colleague, Stockhausen places 'Sieben... 

Tannhäuser at DNO: not director's theatre but subtle take on hypocrisy surrounding courtly and earthly love

A petition was recently started to restore Olivier Keegel's press accreditation by The National Opera. He was denied press passes because he frequently expressed negative views on Pierre Audi's programme choices on the blog Operagazet and in Het Parool. Moreover, he denounced his penchant for "director's theatre", in which, according to him, the content falls prey to a far-fetched... 

*With sound!* Why the Holland Festival show doesn't have to stop for now

'Please stop the show!", shouted an 83-year-old former reviewer from the back row. Theatre Frascati fell silent for a moment. There had never really been such an interruption at the Holland Festival's traditionally festive press conference. And that while Faustin Linyekula had just got into his stride, telling about the projects he is carrying out with his Studio Kanako in Kisangani. They provided... 

Publicity image Gesualdo. Photo: Sofie Knijff

At the Holland Festival, Mackenzie is opening the doors to a new avant-garde among the audience.

The neat couple next to me, in the front row at the Holland Festival press conference, hadn't counted on it for a moment. Four members of the Nederlands Kamerkoor starting to undress one by one down to their pecker-sized nakie. A giggle, a small cough, but hey, this is the Holland Festival, they said to each other. So too... 

Why I love that the Holland Festival is programming Stockhausen's 'Aus Licht'

Towards the end of the year, we are inundated with lists. The best CDs, the best books, the performances you shouldn't have missed, etcetera. In this sea of choices from reviewers and other opinion makers, one post stands out, from opera critic Olivier Keegel. He started a veritable petition to prevent Karlheinz Stockhausen's 'Aus Licht' from being performed in June 2019,... 

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