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The Netherlands Bach Society
& Jos Van Velthoven


Founded in 1921, The Netherlands Bach Society is the oldest Early Music ensemble in the Netherlands, and possibly in the whole world. Yet along with the musicians, its artistic director Jos van Veldhoven is still continually in search of contemporary ways of presenting this music, whether it be the traditional performances of the St. Matthew Passion in Naarden, other works by Johann Sebastian Bach (1685-1750) or music by his predecessors, successors, contemporaries and fellow spirits.

The programmes are often compiled in an original way and thus give a refreshing view of the various musical styles from Schütz/Monteverdi to Haydn/Mozart, as well as of the central composer Bach himself. The flexibility of the ensemble makes it possible to perform works from the secular and sacred repertoires in a great variety of combinations of musicians. In the concerts, top priority is given to beauty, emotion, quality and authentic experience.

For a long time now, the activities of The Netherlands Bach Society have not been restricted to Naarden or Het Gooi, in the Netherlands. They are attracting growing national and international attention from large concert halls and important music festivals, and the ensemble increasingly plays the honourable role of cultural ambassador.

Besides working with principal conductor Jos van Veldhoven, The Netherlands Bach Society also performs with leading early music specialists from the Netherlands and abroad, such as Rinaldo Alessandrini, Peter Dijkstra, Richard Egarr, Gustav Leonhardt, Paul McCreesh, Lars Ulrik Mortensen and Masaaki Suzuki.

In order to reinforce the authentic experience, the concerts are supported where necessary by fringe programming, including introductions, workshops, exhibitions and book publications. Further emphasisis provided by the educational projects, which have also received several awards (e.g. Euro Media Award and the Classical Music Award from the Dutch Association of Theatres and Concert Halls (VSCD)).

The Netherlands Bach Society and Jos van Veldhoven have recorded several CDs, including the Great Organ Mass with the organist Leo van Doeselaar and Bach's St. Matthew Passion. Illustratededitions of the Christmas Oratorio, the St. John Passion and the Mass in B minor have been published in collaboration with Museum Catharijneconvent.




Jos van Veldhoven studied musicology at the Rijksuniversiteit of Utrecht, and choral and orchestral
conducting at the Royal Conservatory, the Hague. He has been artistic director of The Netherlands Bach Society since 1983. In this capacity he regularly gives performances at home and abroad of the major works of Johann Sebastian Bach and his predecessors and contemporaries. In addition he has been the director since 1976 of the Utrechts Barok Consort, which he himself founded. With his ensembles he has made a greatnumber of (inter)national radio, television, and CD recordings, and he has appeared in festivals in the Netherlands, many countries in Western Europe, the United States and Japan.

Jos van Veldhoven is a regular guestartist with international orchestras including Das Orchester der Beethovenhalle Bonn, The Tokyo Philharmonic Orchestra, the Telemann Chamber Orchestra, and the Essener Philharmoniker. Together with director Dietrich Hilsdorf, Jos van Veldhoven has been working since 2001 on a cycle of staged Händel oratorios at the Bonn Opera. Van Veldhoven also appears in his native country as a guestconductor, including appearances with Holland Symfonia and Opera Zuid.

In previous years, Jos van Veldhoven has attracted frequent attention with performances of 'new'repertoire within the realm of early music. Noteworthy among them were performances of oratorios by Telemann and Graun, Vespers by Gastoldi, Netherlands repertoire of the Golden Age, reconstructions of Bach's St. Mark Passion as well as the so-called Köthener Trauer-Music and many unknown 17th century musical dialogues.

In addition Jos van Veldhoven conducted a great many contemporary premieres of baroque operas by composers including Mattheson, Keiser, Andrea and Giovanni Bononcini, Legrenzi, Conti, and Scarlatti.

Jos van Veldhoven is professor of choral conducting at the Amsterdam Conservatory and the Royal Conservatory, The Hague.

'Mr. van Veldhoven elicits readings in the best current style, lithe and lithing but als muscular, imaginative and spontaneous.' - New York Times

'Jos van Veldhoven, the top ranking Netherlands choral director’' - NRC Handelsblad

'As one of the few Netherlands early music performers, conductor Jos van Veldhoven has retained his all-important pioneering zeal’' - Trouw





For further information please visit www.bachvereniging.nl