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Fredagar på Sibbe: Rembrandt Frerichs Trio

The REMBRANDT FRERICHS TRIO has been active on the international concert stages for the last 12 years. Besides pianist Rembrandt Frerichs, the trio is formed by renowned bassist and composer Tony Overwater – winner of the Dutch VPRO / Boy Edgar Price – and percussion innovator and composer Vinsent Planjer. Their music is often described as poetic, visual and impressionistic. The trio has a busy touring schedule each year and have been touring among other places, to Iran, Taiwan, Indonesia, London’s Barbican Centre and countries in Europe, performing in full concert halls each time.

Rembrandt Frerichs (1977) is a pianist with a broad perspective. Focusing his energy on ideas that are meaningful to him, he also knows how to realize them. Familiar with jazz tradition, he wants to avoid the well-trodden path. Rembrandt’s curiosity and knowledge of the art music of different parts of the world urge his music to develop constantly. The way he searches for a new musical idiom makes him push the limits of classical music, improvised music and worldmusic.

At age 22 Rembrandt he received the scholarship for excelling young musicians to study in the United States. Directly after graduating he was asked to start teaching at various Music Universities. Now Rembrandt is professor of jazz piano at the Utrecht conservatory. Both in 2007 and 2014 his albums were nominated for the Dutch Grammy’s (Edison Award). His music brought him playing at legendary Jazzclub Birdland in New York and festivals and clubs in Europe and the Far East.

His personal search for different piano sounds and use of instruments has not remained unnoticed: in 2016 the national instruments fund had a fortepiano built specially for Rembrandt which he currently uses for various projects.

Tony Overwater is one of the most notable Dutch bass players. He is a versatile musician, composer, soloist, band leader and supervisor in the Netherlands and far beyond. He graduated with honors from the Royal Conservatory in The Hague. He won the VPRO / Boy Edgar Prize, the Podium Prize, and an Edison. He worked with extraordinary musicians, including Karin Hammar, Yuri Honing, Pat Metheny, David Murray, Paolo Fresu, Eric Vloeimans and many others. Overwater is also known as an expert organizer. During his time at the conservatory, he founded the Jazz in Motion Foundation and the accompanying record label.

DIFFERENT FORMATIONS

Overwater shares his passion for jazz, Arabic music and baroque music with the other members of the Rembrandt Frerichs Trio. With this trio, he began playing the violone; a 6-string bass instrument from the Baroque era, predecessor of the double bass. Overwater has been playing with the trio Jungle Boldie for over twenty years, with Maarten Ornstein on reeds and drummer Wim Kegel. This close formation formed the basis for a number of original projects, such as Far East Revisited with the Calefax Red Quintet and the CD ‘OP’ with Ack van Rooyen and Ernst Reijseger, which received an Edison. Inspired by working with Lebanese singer Rima Kcheich, Tony Overwater developed a new style of playing on the double bass, incorporating the techniques and scales of Arabic music into a unique style. Working with various other bands and musicians, they form a much sought after attraction at festivals in the Middle East and Europe. Music for children has always had a special place in the heart of Overwater. He sees it as his mission to bring jazz and acoustic music of quality to the attention of kids. After the project ‘Kikker Swingt!’ (From Swings!) with Max Velthuijs, he developed various other music shows together with singer-songwriter Lotte van Dijck.

PROJECT ORGANIZATION AND DOCUMENTARY MUSIC

Being an architect’s son, Tony Overwater has a fascination for the visual aspects of music. In addition to writing music for various films, documentaries and dance shows, he and Joshua Samson initiated the ‘Keeper of the Key’ Project. A location-based concert, taking place on a set day of the month. Each time the performance is held at a different, secret, location and always with a different guest. The interaction between architecture, environment, music, musicians and the audience makes this special small-scale project a unique experience. Overwater recorded the music for the documentary ‘Om de Oude Wereldzee’ about Abraham Kuyper, combining his expertise and affinity with Arabic music and classical European music.

Jazz drummer Vinsent Planjer graduated from the Royal Conservatory in 2001. His final exam stood out because it only consisted of his own compositions. Since then, he has turned into a highly sought after accompanist of jazz soloists at the Dutch music venues and festivals. He is also increasingly involved in producing, developing and organizing artistic endeavours. He plays an important role in the concert series of The Hague Ethospheric Orchestra, which has been performing with the absolute top of the national jazz for the last couple of seasons.

BROADENING HIS PLAYING FIELD

As a member of the Rembrandt Frerichs Trio, Planjer has developed into a leading exponent on his instrument, to be seen at many music venues in the Netherlands and far beyond. His sound is appreciated for its sophistication and at times melodic approach. As a co-project owner of The Contemporary Fortepiano, in which members of the Rembrandt Frerichs Trio use historical instruments, he paves the way for broadening his playing field. Planjer plays the self-designed and built whisperkit. With this line-up, Planjer is increasingly seen at classical music venues and festivals.