Willem Wander van Nieuwkerk composer

nederlands · english

New music in the Classical-Romantic tradition

Latest news

Rosanne Philippens in the 2nd round of the Internationaler Violin Wettbewerd Freiburg Freiburg_Violin_Wettbewerb-Logoplayed the première of my new Zarabande for violin solo (and was later awarded first price!)!

Just started writing S̆kampa-Quartet a new work for the famous Škampa Quartet. First performance planned for March 2015 in The Hague.

Brisk Recorder Quartet Amsterdam opens its new children’s theatre Druk Werk Brisk-Drukwerk(Printed Matter) with my Catch (an Angel).

Sonata ‘Deep River’: after the wonderful première in March, the recording has been issued this summer.

Encore, FRQ’s new cd diapason (with three pieces of mine) has received a rare maximum of 5 diapasons of the famous Diapason Magazine and was very positively reviewed by BR Klassik and Tibia Magazin.

Yuri en RosannePhilippens & van Nieuwkerk played the première of the Scherzo from my new duosonata for violin and piano in the Festival Kamerklanken

Deep River Dancing was
Fuse_Day_Night_Liveperformed in Club 8 at Confuse 2, a programme about America and the elections by Fuse.

New work on historical CD

Globe Records has just issuedInspired by the Bells a cd with beautiful historical music from 17th century France and England including one new work of a single Dutch composer (it’s only me).

festival-nederlandse-kamermuziek. The Festival of Dutch Chamber Music featured my Dance Capriccios in a concert programme with that same title…

Bergidylle on tour

Trio_Amare Trio Amare will play a series of concerts featuring my recently finished Bergidylle, a narrative song cycle for soprano, clarinet and piano on three poems by Heine. A video impression of the 2nd movement is here.

Credits & Contacts

To the colophon
Last update: 24-09-2014

Summer 2014: in two large festivals, Concentus_Moraviae-Logo the Concentus Moraviae Festival Maggio_Musicale_Fiorentino-Logoand the Maggio Musicale Fiorentino music of mine was played.

Very nice to hear that Jean Dube Liszt-competition winner Jean Dube played my Fantasque in his Dutch concert!

At the opening of its academic year, the Faculty of the Humanities at Klassiek anno 2013
the University of Amsterdam heard a new piece of mine…

The Bridal Kiss The Bridal Kiss, recently published at Tre-Fontane, was premiered at the 400 Years Amsterdam Canal District Celebration.

Published: Ludwig was here (wasn’t he)… Ludwig was here-frontfor alto recorder and piano. Order at Tre Fontane. A minus-one of the piano part is available here.

A new cd has sprouted from the Flanders Recorder Quartet Flanders Recorder Quartet, feauturing three works of mine.

Stamping Ground

Stamping Ground (for Angels) voor blokfluitkwartet SAAT.Latest Angelic piece for recorder quartet: Stamping Ground (for Angels), just out at Edition Tre Fontane and recorded even before that

Finally published: Catch (An Angel) for recorder quartet!
Catch (An Angel) for recorder quartet SAATOrder now!

Kamermuziekfestival HoornMy piano trio was played in the Hoorn Chamber Music Festival by the beautifully Romantic Atlantic Trio of pianist Bas Verheijden.


Damon and the International School of Philosophy have more to say about the book Welke taal spreekt de muziek? —- muziekfilosofische beschouwingen; see also News and Text

Listen to -

My violin sonata ‘Deep River’, written for the duo Rosanne Philippens and Yuri van Nieuwkerk, who performed it intensely and with abandon in a concert of the chamber music series that commissioned it, the Slotconcerten Zeist.
All four movements can be found here.

…or to something slightly different -

…like Catch (an Angel), a fast, short caccia, raising once more the ancient question how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, or rather, on the tip of a recorder player’s tongue…
This is the brand new recording by the Flanders Recorder Quartet. Once written for, and recorded by, the Brisk Recorder Quartet Amsterdam.
As regards Angels: important and unique information about them, about their mytho-biological capacities and how these differ from those of other creatures of the imagination can be found here.

A Third Viennese School?

One wonders what the music will be of a new ‘Wholly German Empire’
Maybe like this

Who is he?

Dutch composer Willem Wander van NieuwkerkWillem Wander van Nieuwkerk is a Dutch composer of a new classical music, rich in lyricism and full of rhythmic vitality, that makes the 21st century resonate with the musical traditions of the 19th. Recent examples are his piano trio De tout mon coeur, Over the Water for guitar and string quartet and the songcycle Bergidylle.
Born in Amsterdam in 1955 of Indies-Dutch parents, he started as an improvising musician and only took to written composition while studying musicology at the University of Utrecht. Although he became a specialist in Modern Classical music, his work is marked by the expressive lyricism and formal richness of the Classical-Romantic tradition, while at the same time comprising Pop and Early Music idioms.

He has a mixed background in classic piano, jazz and percussion, and initially worked with self-styled ensembles that combined pop music and pop musicians with classical players and classical forms. His strong interest in Early Music resulted in a number of pieces for Early Music ensembles that successfully apply the sound quality of Early Music to Africa-derived rhythms and a contemporary, highly melodious and polyphonic idiom.

In his new chamber music for traditional chamber music ensembles the extremes of contemporary vernaculars, World Music and Early Music meet. Often having historical melodies as a starting point, sometimes taken from a specifically Dutch background (like the Antwerp Songbook), sometimes from a wider European one (like troubadour song or Protestant church music), these chamber music works combine contemporary rhythms and expression with the polyphony, ensemble playing and lyricism of Classical-romantic forms.

Van Nieuwkerk is a lecturer in 20th century Music History and New Music at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. He is married and has two children, Yuri and Mascha.

There is a more extended bio here.
An overview of my works is here.
Some 14 cd’s with a work of mine on it can be found here.