Instant Poetry and Vocal Music – 11+12 February

Voice enthousiasts and improvisation singers will gather next weekend in the Genetic Choir workshop “Edge of Language”, and there are still a few places open, if you would like to join!

We will explore the exciting realm of “Instant Poetry” as an entrance into vocal music improvisation.

As always, all levels of experience are welcome, and we have a great, committed group already.

language_edge_closerTHE EDGE OF LANGUAGE

a Genetic Choir workshop

When we improvise with our voices, sometimes sounds emerge which are language-like, or even very much like comprehensible words. How do we treat this moment when singers are on the verge of becoming improvising poets?

It is fun to play with the sound of words, mix them and change them. It is what children do a lot and it is a bliss to indulge ourselves into this word-sound playfulness.
But as improvisers, we are looking for more: clarity and depth of expression, not only in music but also when words come in to play.

Continue reading “Instant Poetry and Vocal Music – 11+12 February”

CIRCLE: Genetic Choir performs 18 June @ Sandberg Institute

IMG_2375The Genetic Choir Ensemble will perform
Saturday, 18 June 2016
a graduation work of Cathalijne Smulders from the Cure Master of Sanderg Institute, Amsterdam.
Place: Burgerweeshuis, IJsbaanpad 1-5 Amsterdam
Time: Performances will start at 12:00 and 13:00. Be welcome!
Linking nicely with Genetic Choir’s recent work at the Sarphatihuis Amsterdam where we worked with people with somatic, geriatric or psychiatric backgrounds, in this performance piece we will be working with Cathelijne Smulders and Tamara van Scheppingen in a combined exploration of the disruption of speaking and our relationship to space.
CIRCLE is an exploration of voices that mirror the boundaries of a space, an utterance, the other and a certain duration. It is part of a series of works that echo, mirror, displace and interrupt a (       ), to (dis)orientate prevailing flows of attention and meaning in favor of a more open, synthetic, porous and affectionate proposition of what (       ) can be.

(a body) 

(a mark) 

(a space) 

(a word)

(a time)

February song

Here a composition for this chilly, empty time of the year…   🙂

This is another piece that we actually recorded in the heat of summer last year, thanks to an invitation of Dennis Maij ( to work in his studio. (more recorded music can be found here)

(1) 2002.Olin.9.5x17.5cmMoreover, it is one of the pieces we started making based on graphic scores. Here on a drawing made by Tanja Smit ( She creates drawings based on printed texts in books and newspaper-articles. This drawing – “Olin” – happens to be based on a Finnish text. For more information about Tanja and her collaboration with the Genetic Choir look here.

We are going to sing a concert based on more of her drawings on 10th of February 2013. For more information and reservations, click here or look at the previous post on this blog (below).

Extra Concert with Graphic Scores

After our performance last week in LOOS, the Genetic Choir will sing another concert with the Graphic Scores of Tanja Smit in February!

Los avogados.2x21.5cm.2005The ‘Toon & Taal Festival’ in Alkmaar has invited us to give a matinee concert on Sunday, 10th of February at 15:00 in Provadja. You can also follow a workshop prior to the concert.

14:00 workshop voice-improvisation
15:00 concert starts

Provadja, Verdronkenoord 12, 1811 BE Alkmaar
tickets/reservations: (072) 520 20 22

Genetic Choir sings Tanja Smit – voices and text-images

“Het Genetic Choir maakt composities uit fragmenten van de werkelijkheid. De muziek ontstaat op het moment met het publiek en gebruikt wat is voor handen: de architectuur van de zaal, de aanwezigheid van de mensen, toevallige geluiden, geuren, vormen. Ook meegenomen materiaal kan de basis vormen voor de composities: een schilderij, een woord, iets te eten.
Tanja Smit maakt tekeningen op teksten die ze vindt in boeken en kranten. De beelden die daarbij ontstaan zijn visuele analyses van de tekststructuur. Het lijken partituren die erom vragen gezongen te worden. Een samenwerking lag op de loer. Zowel Smit als het Genetic Choir verkennen in hun werk patronen die onder de oppervlakte van de werkelijkheid liggen en creëren zo nieuwe ervaringen van woorden, beelden en muziek.”

Information about this concert in English? Look here. /

Words in the moment / The Language Choir

Here is a worskhop completely about words and talking in improvisation!

Amsterdam, February 2012 – 4th/5th/9th/10th

As our interest is Instant Vocal Composition, we approach language in this workshop from the point of music, notwithstanding the fact that with language recognizable words open a whole new playing field: the field of meaning. There is no way in which your mind can not create an image in your head when you hear ‘toothbrush’. The speed with which we create meaning from recognizable words is amazing, and you can have a lot of fun staying on the border between sound (playing with vowels, consonants, syllables that don’t mean anyting) and words (when the mind ‘hooks’ on to a possible meaning/image). But this is just the beginning…
Once words are recognizable, and we enter into strings of words, sentences, poems, dialogues or monologues, it is crucial that as improvisers we are fit for the game. What choices can you make, how do you define your playing field? How do keep focus in what you are doing with all the freedom and possible layers of meaning you end up with? How do you prevent the moment where you (and your audience) is totally lost in the soup of words and sentences? Once we play the game of ‘meaning’ (of concrete verbally uttered images) we have the responsibility to bring it to a meaningful end. (whether that ending makes ‘sense’ in a literal, a poetic or musical way).

We will work solo, in small groups and in big ensemble producing pieces of stories, poetic dialogues, language sculptures and wise words.

The workshop will be held in Dutch and/or English, depending on the wishes of the participants. For your individual work during the workshop any language is welcome (French, German, Spanish, Japanese…)

Saturday   04-02-2012    12:00-18:00
Sunday      05-02-2012    10:30-12:30 + Genetic Choir session 13:30-17:30
Thursday  09-02-2012    18:00-22:00
Friday        10-02-2012    12:30-18:15 + concert (until +/- 19:00)

Workshop fee for the four days is: 165 Euro excl. BTW
Place: Amsterdam

You can give yourself up for the workshop or ask for more information by sending a message through this website (see Contact in the menu above)