08-08-1886 - 25-07-1963
During the 1920s, Daniel Ruyneman played a prominent role in the musical life of the city of Groningen, among other things as the conductor of the locally celebrated student orchestra Bragi. He also maintained connections with the painters society 'De Ploeg'. Ruyneman quickly developed as a passionate promoter of cultural ...
Biography Daniel Ruyneman
During the 1920s, Daniel Ruyneman played a prominent role in the musical life of the city of Groningen, among other things as the conductor of the locally celebrated student orchestra Bragi. He also maintained connections with the painters society 'De Ploeg'. Ruyneman quickly developed as a passionate promoter of cultural activity; his Foundation for International Exchange Concerts organised concerts in various European capitals and the United States, bringing him international fame. As a composer, he created an extensive body of works. His music of the 1930s and 1940s shows neo-classical elements of his contemporaries Igor Stravinsky, Sergei Prokofiev and Francis Poulenc. In later compositions, his work leaned torward the the twelve-tone methods of Arnold Schoenberg and Anton Webern, as evidenced by his four 'Réflections' (1959-1961). Ruyneman's importance to Dutch musical life was aptly summed up by Paul Op de Coul (in the 'Biographisch Woordenboek van Nederland'): “In fact, he was the only one who in this way promoted the cause of modern Dutch and foreign music. He presented precisely those works and composers who fell outside the standard repertoire and established music business, which inexhaustibly served the music of the past and utterly failed with regard to the music of its own time.”
Daniel Ruijneman – he later substituted the “y” for “ij” in the family name – was born in Amsterdam on August 8. He took piano lessons as a youth but initially had no plans of pursuing a career in music. Only at age 27 did he seek professional musical training.
1913 - 1916
Ruyneman studies composition with Bernard Zweers and the piano with Karel de Jong at the Amsterdam Conservatory. In 1915, he marries the singer Dina Becht.
1917 - 1918
He establishes a personal musical idiom in the 'Chineesche Liederen'. With the composer Henri Zagwijn, he founds the Netherlands Society for Creative Music in 1918. He places himself on the frontline of the musical avant-garde with two compositions: 'Hieroglyphs', for ensemble, and 'L'Appel' [The Call], for unaccompanied chamber choir. On December 1, Ruyneman and others disrupt a concert in the Amsterdam Concertgebouw in a show of support for Matthijs Vermeulen, who was barred from the concert hall after protesting the policies of the conductor Willem Mengelberg and his preference for Cornelis Dopper.
Ruyneman goes to Groningen and sometime later becomes the conductor of this city's student orchestra 'Bragi' as well as the choir of 'Magna Pete', the female student group.
His Society for Creative Music is absorbed into the Dutch chapter of the International Society for Contemporary Music.
1925 - 1928
Ruyneman sets 'Quatre poèmes' – from Apollinaire's 'Alcools' poems – to music. He finishes the 'Divertimento' (1927), for chamber ensemble, in which he shows himself less concerned with timbre than the linear-melodic and structural aspects. He writes the opera 'Les Frères Karamazoff' (1928), on his own libretto based on the novel by Fyodor Dostoyevsky.
His marriage with Dina Becht is annulled. A month later, he marries Maatje Martina Marinissen.
He returns to Amsterdam and there founds the Netherlands Society for Contemporary Music.
He begins the 'Maandblad voor Hedendaagsche Muziek' [Contemporary Music Monthly Magazine] and serves as its editor in chief. This prominent periodical attracts well-known contributors from the Netherlands and abroad. With the Viennese composer and conductor Hans Pless, he establishes the Foundation for International Exchange Concerts and is its first secretary. In the 'Sonata for Chamber Choir', he furthers the principle of vocal colour-polyphony.
1933 - 1938
Ruyneman's versatility finds expression in the 'electrophone', a musical instrument he designs and employs in the ensemble piece 'Symphony breve'. In 1938, he publishes his book about the composer Jan Ingenhoven.
1941 - 1946
The German occupation force bans Ruyneman's 'Maandblad voor Hedendaagsche Muziek'. He finishes the 'Quatuor à cordes' in 1946.
1947 - 1948
Ruyneman is the first secretary of the Dutch chapter of the International Society for Contemporary Music. In January and February, he writes 'Die Weise von Liebe und Tod des Kornets Christoph Rilke', a 'declamatorio' based on texts by Rainer Maria Rilke.
In addition to his many other functions, Ruyneman becomes director of the Stedelijk Museum Concerts in Amsterdam, a position he holds for the rest of his life.
1959 - 1961
In the Experimental Music series, he presents compositions by Hans Werner Henze, Karlheinz Stockhausen, Pierre Boulez, Peter Schat and Ton de Leeuw. He writes a series of pieces called 'Réflexions'.
'Gilgamesj', for orchestra, is a series of impressions created after reading the ancient Babylonian epoch 'Gilgamesh'.
Daniel Ruyneman dies in his birthplace Amsterdam on July 25.
Discography Daniel Ruyneman
In the discography you will find all recordings that have been released listed chronologically. We restrict ourselves to the title, the type of audio, year of publication or recording, label, list of guest musicians, plus any comments on the issue.
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