MicroFest Amsterdam 2011

Festival | 11th of December 2011, 11.00-21.30 hours | BAM Hall, Muziekgebouw aan ’t IJ in Amsterdam


MicroFest Amsterdam 2011


In December of this year the Huygens-Fokker Foundation organizes the first microtonal festival in The Netherlands, under the title MicroFest Amsterdam 2011. The foundation will thus follow into the footsteps of the Los Angeles-based MicroFest and the UK MicroFest in London. Through a versatile program of the most diverse forms of microtonality many
enthusiastic listeners and interested in unconventional tunings and microtonal music will be served. Music that, like the famous American composer Charles Ives put it, consists of ‘the
tones between the keys of the piano’. Thus, the festival wil give attention to 31-tone music, 19-tone music, quarter-tone music, 96-tone music, music in Bohlen-Pierce tuning, music in meantone temperament and music based on just intonation. These tunings or divisions of the octave are leading to completely new musical and tonal possibilities, a source of fresh sounds that forever expands the ear of the listener and the thinking about music.




11.00 – 12.15 Le Club Microtonal   >>>

Under the program title Le Club Microtonal, the Fokker-orgel is in this concert part of the Ensemble SCALA, a new seven-member club musicians who are specialized in microtonal music. Together, they bring the audience a spectrum of new sounds by exploring the boundaries of the colorful 31- and 24-tone tuning. Alongside newly composed works, there will be well-tried microtonal works of old masters to be heard. Works of a.o. François Gabriel Madden, Ned McGowan and Sander Germanus.

Ensemble SCALA:
Raymond Honing - flute
Michel Marang - clarinet
Manuel Visser - viola
Stefan Gerritsen - 31-tone guitar
Keiko Shichijo - keyboards / Carrillo-piano
Ere Lievonen - Fokker-orgel
Adam Jeffrey - percussion

13.30 – 14.30 Lecture performance door dr. Bob Gilmore
Bob Gilmore is head of the musicology department at the Brunel University of London and is specialized in microtonal music. During this lecture he will explain and show film clips about two pioneers of microtonal music: Ivan Wyschnegradsky and Harry Partch.

15.00 – 16.00 From 19 to 96 tones in the octave   >>>
Keiko Shichijo - Carrillo-piano
Anne La Berge - microtonal flute

Martin Imholtz (1961) - "Sechs Stücke für 1/16 Ton Klavier" (2001)
Juan Felipe Waller (1971) - Lhorong, 31ºN 96ºE (2011) for Carrillo-piano and Fokker-orgel

Bernfried E.G. Pröve (1963) - Écho à Gérard (2001) 1.Terra incognita I / 2.Blues / 3.Terra incognita II
Alain Banquart (1934) - "Habiter l'ambre" for Carrillo-piano and tape (2001)

Anne La Berge / Keiko Shichijo - Improvisation for microtonal flute and Carrillo-piano
Larry Polansky (1954) - v'leem shol
David Lang (1957) arr. La Berge - Thorn
Anne La Berge (1955) - Away (in 19-tone EDO)

As a pianist Keiko Shichijo gives solo and chamber music concerts throughout Europe and Japan. During this concert she will perform on the 96-tone Carrillo-piano (ór 1/16-tone piano). The Carrillo-piano of the brand Sauter is developed by a collaboration between Julián Carrillo (1875-1965) and Carl Sauter in the 50s of last century and has inspired many composers and musicians to compose and perform microtonal music. The refined 96-tone system of Carrillo can actually approach each pure interval. Thus, at the Carrillo-piano diverse spectral overtone sounds and chords can be approached nearly perfect. The programme includes some standard repertoire works and new compositions for the Carrillo-piano.

* View all the sponsors who made it possible to purchase the Carrillo-piano.

Anne La Berge's career as a flutist / improviser / composer is beyond international and stylistic boundaries. In her performances she combines various musical aspects, including improvised microtonal textures and delicately woven melodies. Her concert flutes are built using the Kingmasystem, which allows her to play microtones more easy.

16.30 – 17.15 Forum: Microtonal music in practice
Several experts and performers of microtonal music, including the Canadian Siemen Terpstra and the Dutch composer Gijsbrecht Royé, will attend the discussion about the question in what way microtonal systems can be applied in practice to result in more acurate performances. A subject that can hopefully lead to a more precise performances of microtonal music. The discussion is led by Sander Germanus.

20.15 – 21.30 Bohlen-Pierce meets Huygens-Fokker   >>>
Ere Lievonen - Fokker-orgel
Nora-Louise Müller - Bohlen-Pierce clarinet
Ákos Hoffman - Bohlen-Pierce clarinet

Ere Lievonen will play some highlights from the repertoire of the Fokker-orgel, including a work by Ivan Wyschnegradsky. Thus he will perform both ancient music in meantone temperament and new music specifically composed for the 31-tone organ. In addition, a short but powerful composition will sound in
which the Fokker-orgel is controlled entirely by a laptop computer. During this concert Nora Louise Muller and Ákos Hoffman will perform in inimitable way on the Bohlen-Pierce clarinets. The Bohlen-Pierce scale uses the duodecime as its harmonic framework, which is divided into 13 steps, entirely according to mathematical calculations. This results in an alternative musical system that offers new possibilities for contemporary music in the future. In 2008 the first Bohlen-Pierce clarinet was completed and now there are many new works composed for, several of which this concert will sound.

On the programme works of François Gabriel Madden, Manfred Stahnke, Hans Kox, Georg Hajdu, Tarquinio Merula, Owen Bloomfield, Danny de Graan, Sascha Lino Lemke and Ivan Wyschnegradsky.

* This concert is sponsored by the National Aerospace Laboratory (NLR).




Single concerts are 15 euros, a passe-partout for the entire festival costs 24 euros. >>>

Reduction tickets (Stadspas, CJP, 65+) for single concerts are 12 euros.

Tickets can be reserved at the Muziekgebouw. The tickets include a drink after the concert at the restaurant Zouthaven of the Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ.

Restaurants in the neighborhood 

There are several restaurants in the neighborhood of the Muziekgebouw to eat lunch or have diner.



This festival is made possible by the support of: the Amsterdam Fund for the Arts, National Aerospace Laboratory (NLR), the Goethe-Institut (Netherlands) and the Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ.
The renovation of the Fokker organ was made possible by o.a. the Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds and the SNS REAAL Fonds. A donation of the Nederlands Akoestisch Genootschap and a shared contribution of six reputable consultancy offices, namely Cauberg-Huygen, DGMR, LBP|SIGHT, M+P, Peutz and Wijnia-Noorman-Partners (WNP) made it possible for Huygens-Fokker to purchase the Carrillo-piano.
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Looking back on the festival

Read here the blog of Nora-Louise Müller about the MicroFest Amsterdam 2011.