Pop/Rock Dance Hiphop Jazz World Classical Contemporary Stage Festival Genre tree

LEX VAN DELDEN

Summary | Biography | Discography | Photos | Audio/Video

Lex van Delden

Period

10-09-1919 - 01-07-1988

Genre

classical, componist

Lex van Delden

Lex van Delden (Alexander Zwaap) is a self-taught composer and throughout his working life a music critic for the daily newspaper Het Parool. Most of his earliest compositions are destroyed during the bombardment of Nijmegen in 1944. His music is characterised by an “idealistic zest for life” (Jan Mul), “very ...
Full biography

Instruments

componist

Mentioned in the biography of

1937   Nico Richter
1950   Nederlands Kamerkoor

Biography Lex van Delden

Lex van Delden (Alexander Zwaap) is a self-taught composer and throughout his working life a music critic for the daily newspaper Het Parool. Most of his earliest compositions are destroyed during the bombardment of Nijmegen in 1944. His music is characterised by an “idealistic zest for life” (Jan Mul), “very lively rhythm” (Marius Flothuis), and placing himself at the service of society by, among other things, honouring the principle of tonality (Leo Samama). In his oeuvre, nearly all genres – except for opera and church music – are represented. He often selects less usual instrumental combinations, giving particular attention to the harp. Van Delden held various administrative positions in music. He was a long-time chairman of the Dutch music copyright association Buma/Stemra, the Society of Dutch Composers (GeNeCo), a board member of the International Society for Contemporary Music (ISCM), and a member of the Dutch Committee of the International Music Council (UNESCO).

1919 - 1936

Lex van Delden is born as Alexander Zwaap on September 10 in Amsterdam. He begins composing at age 11 and has piano lessons from Cor de Groot, among others.

Cor de Groot

1937 - 1940

After completing secondary schooling, he studies medicine at the University of Amsterdam. While a student, he makes his debut as a composer with the song cycle 'L’amour' (1939).

1945

After the war, Alexander Zwaap uses the name Lex van Delden, a variation on the name he used while in hiding during the war. He becomes the house composer and music director of the first post-war ballet company, Op Vrije Voeten (later, the Scapino Ballet).

1947

Van Delden becomes the music editor of the daily newspaper Het Parool and also publishes articles in Dutch and foreign periodicals.

1948

Lex van Delden attracts attention with the performance of 'Rubáiyát', for soprano, tenor, choir, two pianos and percussion. The piece earns him the Grote Muziekprijs of the City of Amsterdam.

1949

Van Delden composes 'Partita Piccola', an unusual choral piece without words in which the vocalists even hum the last movement.

1951

Van Delden is awarded the annual prize of the Northern California Harpists’ Association for 'Concerto per arpa ed orchestra'.

1953

After the flooding disaster in Zeeland, Van Delden writes the orchestral piece 'In Memoriam'. Later works also show his social engagement.

1955

Again Lex van Delden is awarded the annual prize of the Northern California Harpists’ Association, this time for the solo harp piece 'Impromptu'.

1962 - 1967

The radio oratorio 'Icarus' (also) is inspired by current events. In it, Van Delden reflects on the tense expectations surrounding space exploration, making use of recent news reports, Biblical quotes, and other texts in combination with electronic instruments. 'Canto della Guerra' (1967), for choir and orchestra, on texts by Erasmus, is a condemnation of war.

1971

'Sestetto per archi' is a surprisingly sharply formulated musical statement. Its emphasis on pounding motifs as well as its momentum show the influence of Dimitry Shostakovich.

1982

After 35 years, Van Delden resigns as music critic of Het Parool. He is awarded the Speld van Verdienste [Merit Pin] by the City of Amsterdam.

1988

Lex van Delden dies in Amsterdam on July 1.

Discography Lex van Delden

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.

Photos Lex van Delden

Audio/Video Lex van Delden

No audio- or video material is yet available.
Add audio or video

Add audio or video

Muziekencyclopedie.nl on Facebook Muziekencyclopedie.nl on Twitter

Feedback