Amsterdam Maatschappij tot Bevordering der Toonkunst (Society for the promotion of Music)

  • Established: 1829.
  • Jerome Alexander Sillem (1840-1912) and Wilhelm Cnoop Koopmans (1837-1895) both friends of Johannes Brahms (1833-1897) and Dirk Herbert Joosten (1840-1930).
  • The Maatschappij tot Bevordering der Toonkunst (abbreviated MBT) is a Dutch organization for choirs who practice singing on a neutral basis. More than 140 choirs with a total of about 6,000 members are connected to the MBT.
  • The Society for the Promotion of Art was by A.C.G. Vermeulen founded on 19 and 20-04-1829 in Amsterdam. This was done by analogy with the Society for Nut of General, which existed since 1784. Local departments were also established immediately, for example in Amsterdam, Dordrecht, The Hague, Rotterdam and Utrecht. These MBT departments in turn set up music and / or singing schools. These institutions are often the basis of the current government-sponsored music schools and conservatoires, for example the Conservatorium van Amsterdam. The teaching tasks of the MBT have been taken over by the government over time.
  • In addition, choir departments were often set up by the local departments, which led to the contemporary Toonkunstkoren, which are active in various Dutch cities.
  • In the 19th century, the Society also organized music parties. These lasted 2 or 3 days. The music festivals were organized with great pomp and the number of simultaneous singers and musicians was often very large. In 1907, the last music party was organized, after previous editions had already undergone austerity.
  • The establishment of the Society was partly motivated by nationalistic motives. They wanted to form the people and promote the culture of their own nation. The result of the creation was that the composition of diverse choir music (both accompanied and a capella) got a strong impulse.
  • As of 01-01-2008, part of the “Society for the Promotion of Art” was split off in the “Vereniging Toonkunst Nederland” (VTN). This association has taken over the advocacy task of the MBT and all affiliated choirs have been transferred to this association. The original “Maatschappij tot Bevordering der Toonkunst” has also continued to exist, but no longer has any members and only deals with the management of the various funds.

Amsterdam Maatschappij tot Bevordering der Toonkunst Music Festival 1912. Conductor Willem Mengelberg (1871-1951).

Amsterdam Music magazine Caecilia

  • Established: 1841.
  • Caecilia: Algemeen muzikaal tijdschrift van Nederland 1844-1917 (Caecilia: General musical magazine of the Netherlands 1844-1917)
  • Caecilia en de muziek 1933-1940 (Caecilia and the music 1933-1940)
  • De vereenigde tijdschriften Caecilia en Het muziekcollege 1917-1931 (The unified magazines Caecilia and Het muziekcollege 1917-1931)
  • Het Muziekcollege Caecilia: maandblad voor muziek 1931-1933 (The Music College Caecilia: monthly magazine for music 1931-1933)
  • 08-06-1888 Vacancy in the Music magazine Caecilia for a director of an orchestra to be formed. Amsterdam Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (RCO).

1844. Amsterdam Music magazine Caecilia.

Amsterdam Wagner Society

  • Established: Year 1883.
  • Wagner Vereeniging.
  • In the summer of 1883, some music friends visited Bayreuth. Impressed by what they had heard and seen there, side names and a few kindred spirits decided to try to get Wagner’s music into the Netherlands as well. A ‘Wagner-Vereeniging’ was established. Initiators were: Henri Viotta (1848-1933), J.G. Bunge and J.W. Wilson. J.C. Bunge was an enthusiastic companion from the beginning and joined the board in 1894. On 26-01-1884, almost a year after Richard Wagner (1813-1883)‘s death 1, the first concert took place in the Felix Meritis building.
  • At first there was a lot of enthusiasm among the public, as well as a lot of resistance, among others from the circle of the very conservative Johannes Verhulst, who then still held the musical scepter in the Capital. He did not tolerate renewal and was a fierce opponent of, among others, Berlioz, Liszt and especially Wagner. In 1886, however, he retired from the Amsterdam music scene. The young ‘Wagner Society’ had success. In the first years, performances were always performed in concert form, but on May 19, 1893, a complete integrated theater performance of ‘Siegfried in the Paleis voor Volksvlijt’ was ventured for the first time. This was followed by great performances by many Wagner operas
  • In 1905 a fierce struggle between ‘Wagner-Vereeniging’ and the descendants and worshipers of the master in Bayreuth arose. Amsterdam also wanted Wagner’s last work ‘Parsifal’ to be performed and that would be contrary to the wishes of the Composer, who had composed the opera exclusively for performances in Bayreuth. The German relatives and friends protested violently against the Amsterdam plans, but the Dutch Wagnerians continued and in 1905, 1903 and 1908 Amsterdam had its performances of the work.

Year 1891. Amsterdam Wagner Society. Max Achenbach Alvary (1851-1898) (tenor), Johannes Messchaert (1857-1922) (baritone).

Amsterdam Conservatory

  • Established: Year 1884.
  • 1884: The Conservatorium of Amsterdam was founded in 1884 as the Amsterdamsch Conservatorium, four years before the completion of the Amsterdam Royal Concertgebouw.
  • Initiative by Daniel de Lange, Julius Rontgen (1855-1932) and J.B. de Pauw and the Maatschappij tot Bevordering der Toonkunst (Society for the promotion of Music).
  • This made the Dutch musicians less dependent on the German Conservatories.
  • 1920: Establishment of a conservatory by a society called ‘Muziek Lyceum’.
  • Address 1929-1973: ‘Muziek Lyceum’ building in the Albert Hahnplantsoen (Minerva plantsoen). Demolished in 1973.
  • 1931: Bachzaal is completed. Address: Bachstraat No. 5. Still exists.
  • 1976: Amsterdamsch Conservatorium, Muzieklyceum and Haarlems Muzieklyceum merge to form the ‘Sweelinck Conservatorium.
  • 1985: ‘Sweelinck Conservatorium’ moved to the Van Baerlestraat.
  • Address 1985-2008: Van Baerlestraat No. 27. The Conservatory is located in the building of the former Rijkspostspaarbank on the Van Baerlestraat (near the Amsterdam Royal Concertgebouw). Built: 1901. Building in the van Baerlestraat still exists. Now Hotel Conservatorium.
  • Address 2008-0000: The Conservatorium of Amsterdam has its home in a new building at the Oosterdokkade No. 151 (near Amsterdam Central Station).

Muziek Lyceum, Albert Hahnplantsoen, Amsterdam.

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