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THEO BRUINS

Summary | Biography | Discography | Photos | Audio/Video

Theo Bruins

Period

25-11-1929 - 08-01-1993

Genre

classical, componist, contemporary classical music, piano, twelve-tone technique and serialism

Theo Bruins

As a pianist, Theo Bruins is from 1960 an enthusiastic advocate of 20th-century music. His repertoire – about 30 piano concertos and a selection of solo pieces – reaches from Sweelinck to contemporary music. Kees van Baaren, Jan van Vlijmen and Tristan Keuris each dedicate piano concertos to him. Bruins ...
Full biography

Instruments

componist, piano

Mentioned in the biography of

1950   Maarten Bon
1956   Klaus Kuiper

Biography Theo Bruins

As a pianist, Theo Bruins is from 1960 an enthusiastic advocate of 20th-century music. His repertoire – about 30 piano concertos and a selection of solo pieces – reaches from Sweelinck to contemporary music. Kees van Baaren, Jan van Vlijmen and Tristan Keuris each dedicate piano concertos to him. Bruins is also a talented composer, though he writes only seven pieces. The Johan Wagenaar Foundation names a prize after him that is awarded to people such as publicists and organisers who make an exceptional contribution to Dutch musical life.

1946 - 1948

After taking piano lessons from his mother, Theo Bruins (born November 25, 1929, in Arnhem) studies the piano at the Amsterdam Muzieklyceum with Jaap Spaanderman. He soon makes his concert debut. In 1947, he performs with the Utrecht City Orchestra, conducted by Willem van Otterloo, and the following year he debuts with the Concertgebouw Orchestra.

1948 - 1952

Theo Bruins studies in Paris with the legendary pianist Yves Nat. In his last year, he composes as part of his studies the 'Six pièces brèves', his first composition. He then studies composition with Kees van Baaren in The Hague. Theo Bruins writes the 'Concerto per pianoforte ed orchestra' (1952) for the J. Pzn. Sweelinck Student Orchestra. It is his first official composition and one of the first twelve-tone pieces in The Netherlands.

Kees van Baaren

1959

After a recital in London Theo Bruins is awarded the Harriet Cohen Beethoven Medal.

1963 - 1983

In addition to the standard Classical-Romantic repertoire, Bruins performs increasingly more avant-garde music. He writes the 'Sei Studi', etudes intended especially for pianists who play modern music. He says of these pieces: “In 'Sei Studi', the emphasis lies principally on purely pianistic, especially rhythmical-metrical difficulties inherent in new music”. After, he publishes no new music for a long time because of “the laborious nature of the composer’s work”. He teaches at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague.

1984

Theo Bruins writes his first composition after the 'Sei Studi'; 'Quartet ’84' is inspired by 'Octet ’61' by Cornelius Cardew.

1992 - 1993

His final composition, 'Sincope' (1992), is for the harpsichord, rather than the piano. Bruins writes the piece – in a “lightened serial style” – for his wife, the harpsichordist Liesbeth Hoppen. Theo Bruins dies in Haarlem on January 8.

Discography Theo Bruins

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 Theo Bruins

Audio/Video Theo Bruins

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