Vocal Instant Composition

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Your audience guide to the Odyssey this Saturday

(1) Banner invitation 2This Saturday, 14 July, the 10 hour concert and reading of Genetic Choir and the International Readers of Homer on the Over het Ij Festival will finally happen!

As we can imagine that not everyone wants to spend the whole ten hours with us, here a guide to some great moments in the story & music (of which there are many!):

+/- 12:00 Opening (always a great moment, with probably the most famous lines of the poem, read in ancient Greek)

+/- 13:10 Goddess Calypso is told by Zeus to give up her lover Odysseus (which she is not taking lightly).

+/- 13:30 Poseidon rages and conjures a storm that leaves Odysseus shipwrecked and lost in the ocean.

+/- 15:00 Odysseus taunts the Cyclops and is cursed to end up with his ship even further from home, thrown back and further back by a bag of winds.

+/- 16:00 Odysseus enters the underworld to meet (amongst other ghosts and dead warriors) the ghost of his mother that he longs to touch, but can’t.

+/- 17:30 How to welcome a stranger (Odysseus arrives at Eumaios house) “One must honor guests and foreigners and strangers, even those much poorer than oneself.”

+/- 19:20 Penelope and Odysseus meet again after twenty years of being separate, while Odysseus keeps playing hide and seek with her. (What a relationship!)

+/- 21:00 Penelope puts Odysseus to the test about his true identity before she accepts him again.

+/- 21:30 Odysseus slaughters all the suitors and their helpers to reclaim his house (it feels almost Klingon, if you know the reference ;-))

+/- 22:00 Last sentences of the poem + musical Epilogue by Genetic Choir, after singing for 10 hours, to sum up and close the experience of this Amsterdam Odyssey.

If you want to read yourself a 3-minute fragment, you can still give yourself up:

PLACE: Nieuw Dakota, Ms. van Riemsdijkweg 41b, Amsterdam


MORE INFO: click here

The performance is invited by and created in collaboration with Giorgos Gripeos’ installation “an odyssey”.

See you on Saturday!

We sing the Odyssey, you read!

Dear Genetic Choir fans and supporters,

a unique event is coming up, in which you are invited to participate:

On 14 July, you can join the Genetic Choir in a 10 hour concert/reading of the Odyssey, and read a piece of this epic tale, together with 200 other readers on the Over ‘t Ij festival in Amsterdam!

The Genetic Choir will instantly compose the music to this marathon reading, organised together with The International Readers of Homer and hosted by Giorgos Gripeos‘ installation “an odyssey” at Nieuw Dakota during the Over het Ij festival 2018. The performance will be streamed live to the ferries crossing the water between Westerdokdijk (Pontsteiger) and the NDSM werf.

It is a free event, you are welcome to come anytime during those 10 hours to experience it. And you are also invited to participate actively as one of the readers of this epic tale!

To be a reader of a 3 minute piece of the Odyssey, register here:


And if you don’t want to read, just come, listen and experience it!

Saturday, 14 July, 12:00-22:00
Location: Nieuw Dakota , Ms.van Riemsdijkweg 41b, 1033RC Amsterdam

For the Odyssey reading, the Genetic Choir will perform 10 hours of live music, using their unique form of vocal instant composition. Reminiscent of an ancient Greek Choir, the singers comment on, foretell and mirror the events of the story, reacting to the verbal rhythm of each reader. To capture and transmit a sense of the epic length of Odysseus’ journey, the singers are a constant witness to the events and stay ‘on board’ from the first sentence to the last

photo by Giorgos Gripeos

Genetic Choir on Utrecht Impro Night BUI – tonight!

Join us in Utrecht tonight for a Genetic Choir concert in double-bill with Hugo Ariëns on the June edition of

BUI (Bevordering Utrechtse Improvisatie) in the Moira, Utrecht

Tuesday, 12 June, doors open 19:30, concert starts 20:00.

The evening includes a free play session after the two sets of Genetic Choir and Hugo Ariëns.


Moira, Wolvenstraat 10, Utrecht

Collaborative Writing meets Impeded Speech meets Genetic Choir

Genetic Choir singers will perform a retake of the CIRCLE performance developed together with Cathalijne Smulders and Tamara van Scheppingen tonight at Theater Perdu in Amsterdam.

The evening is called “Weaving Practices” and showcases several writers who engaged on collaborative practices of creation.

In CIRCLE, Cathalijne explores together with the Genetic Choir the vocal and lingual realms that can be entered when engaging on poetic grounds with a performer with aphasia, a speech impediment.

See you tonight!


Friday, 1 June 2018

doors open 19:30, evening starts 20:00

Entrance: 9 € / 6 €

Theater Perdu, Kloveniersburgwal 86, Amsterdam



New Friday Morning Sessions from September 2018

In September will start a new series of eight Friday morning sessions, in a two-weekly rhythm.

A pioneer group of singers has already inscribed, so it will definitely happen! Who else is in? 🙂

We are looking for people who have done at least one Genetic Choir workshop before and who want to commit to a stable training group for this autumn.

All core aspects of Genetic Choir singing will be covered – stillness and daring, working melody, rhythm and strange sound. Engagement, availability and timing. Crystallizing your material and composing together as a swarm of singers!

If you want to join, but you haven’t done a workshop before, there is one last place available this weekend (26/27 May = click here).

If we know you already, hook on for this autumn:


PLACE: studio De Eester, C. van Eesterenlaan 302, Amsterdam
DATES: every second Friday morning, starting September 7th, 2018 (8 sessions)
The single dates are: 7-09 / 21-09 / 5-10 / 19-10 / 2-11 / 16-11 / 30-11 / 14-12

TIME: 10:00-12:30
COSTS: 232,32 euro for the whole block (192,- euro excl.VAT)

To reserve your place (if you have done a Genetic Choir workshop before):

  1. send us an e-mail via
    workshops@genetic-choir.org with your
    – name (and account owner from where you made the payment)
    – telephone number
  2. please transfer the workshop fee by clicking this payment link

For those of you planning far ahead: Friday Sessions will continue in the new year from January 18th, 2019  🙂

Genetic Choir Introductory Workshop in Breda on 14 April

For those of you in the south of the Netherlands and Belgium, there is a great opportunity get acquainted with Genetic  Choir work next Saturday, 14 April in Breda. Main workshop language will be Dutch, but we can accommodate English speakers as well. 🙂

(Nederlandse beschrijving zie beneden)

Organised by Musicaja Zangschool, we will work from 10:00-11:30 in a mixed group with adults and kids and go further until 14:00 with the adults only, to dive even deeper into the complexities and bliss of vocal instant compositions.

You can inscribe for the day via this link:


For participants not linked to Musicaja the workshop costs €40,- (bring in cash to the workshop).

Place is the Musicaja Zangschool on Bastionstraat 13 in Breda, Netherlands.

Bring lunch ingredients that you like for a shared lunch-picknick.  🙂


A.s. zaterdag 14 april organiseert de Musicaja Zangschool Breda een speciale workshop voor leerlingen en niet-leerlingen.

Gastdocent Thomas Johannsen, muzikaal leider van het bijzondere Genetic Choir, gaat met alle deelnemers aan de slag met stemimprovisatie:

Het Genetic Choir is een vocaal ensemble dat concerten zingt zonder muzikale afspraken vooraf. De vocalisten trainen elkaar als een improviserende microsamenleving, die uit stilte en alle soorten geluiden muziek laat ontstaan.
Maar hoe ontstaat vanuit toevallige klanken muzikaal materiaal? En hoe kies je elk moment welke kant je opgaat? In een Genetic Choir workshop trainen we daarvoor heel specifiek improvisatie vaardigheden, waaronder de vaardigheid als zanger soepel mee te bewegen in een zwerm van klank mogelijkheden, en hoe je tegelijkertijd trouw blijft aan jezelf. We trainen overgave en stevigheid, plezier in je eigen stem en plezier in de stilte. Timing, luisteren en contact houden – tegelijkertijd met jezelf, met je materiaal en met de andere zangers.
En daarnaast gaan we gewoon heel veel muziek maken. 🙂  Kortom, een vol programma voor een halve dag!

Meer informatie over de workshops (in het Engels) kun je hier vinden: https://geneticchoir.wordpress.com/genetic-choir-workshop/

Voor algemene info over het Genetic Choir, kijk hier: www.genetic-choir.org

De workshop duurt van 10 uur tot 14 uur (van 10 tot 11.30 uur zullen er ook kinderen van de Musicaja Zangschool meedoen).
Tussendoor gaan we met z’n allen lunchen. Neem allemaal een lunchgerecht mee wat je met anderen kan delen. Zo maken we een heerlijk lunchbuffet.

Je kan je voor deze dag aanmelden via deze link:


Voor niet-Musicaja-leerlingen kost de workshop €40,-, graag contant te voldoen bij aanvang van de workshop.

De workshop vindt plaats bij de Musicaja Zangschool aan Bastionstraat 13 (in de lage bijgebouwen).

Splendor concert with Matthäus passion fragments !

Tap dance, singing and percussion meet in a concert full of movement!

The Genetic Choir will sing an unusual concert next Tuesday in Splendor together with classical singer Brigitte van Hagen, the idiosyncratic Taiwanese percussionist Yung-Tuan Ku and tap wizard Marije Nie, who is the host of the evening.

Fitting the Easter Season, four Genetic Choir singers will work a piece of Bach’s Matthew passion into their instant composition offerings during the concert.

Come and witness this first emanation of a new line of Genetic Choir work, exploring close harmony in combination with free improvisation, which is planned to come to full bloom in this autumn’s (Non)Corpus project.

“Shouts, Whispers, Feets and Beats”

Tuesday, April 3, 2018

@ Splendor: Nieuwe Uilenburgerstraat 116 – 1011 LX Amsterdam

Time: 20:30-22:00

More info and tickets through the Splendor website

There is also a Facebook event to like!