""It appears no less than a veritable contribution, and proofs how our national amateur choirs in the past quarter century have developed positively""www.opusklassiek.nl, 19-9-2013
Jan Willem de Vriend is the artistic director of Combattimento Consort Amsterdam and since 2006 the chief conductor and artistic director of the NetherlandsSymphony Orchestra.
Combattimento Consort Amsterdam devotes itself to the music of about 1600 to 1830. Since its founding in 1982, it has performed virtually throughout the world as well as on many CDs, DVDs and television productions.
Since De Vriend was named chief conductor in 2006, the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra has become a notable phenomenon on the Netherlands’ musical scene. It has presented semi-scenic performances of works by Mozart, Beethoven, Strauss and Mendelssohn. There were premieres of works by Offenbach, Say and Mahler. And by substituting historical instruments in the brass section, it has developed its own distinctive sound in the 18th- and 19th-century repertoire. Recently, the orchestra performed music by Schumann at festivals in Spain. The release of Beethoven’s complete symphonies, conducted by De Vriend, is a big project which starts with the release of this current CD. Also the orchestra's long Mahler tradition is being continued in recordings and tours.
De Vriend has been a guest conductor with the Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, the Netherlands Radio Chamber Philharmonic, the Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, The Hague Philharmonic and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, as well as orchestras in Germany, Sweden and Australia. He is often invited to conduct both in the Netherlands and abroad. He has engagements pending, for example, with The Hague Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra as well as orchestras in China, Germany, Austria and Italy.
Dutch soprano Judith van Wanroij studied with Margreet Honig at the Amsterdam Conservatory and at the Dutch National Opera Academy. She won several national and international prizes. Her opera debut she made in the title role of La Périchole; thereafter she has been singing a.o. Junon (Platée), Ilia (Idomeneo), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), First Lady (Die Zauberflöte), Musetta (La Bohème), at opera houses such as De Nederlandse Opera Amsterdam, La Monnaie Brussels, Teatro Real Madrid, and Théatre du Capitole Toulouse. Next to conductors such as Frans Brüggen, Andrea Marcon, Jérémie Rhorer, and Jaap van Zweden, she regularly works with William Christie and Les Arts Florissants, René Jacobs and his Akademie für Alte Musik, Berlin, Christophe Rousset and his Les Talens Lyriques, and Jan Willem de Vriend and the orchestras he works with. She appeared on several recordings with these conductors and their ensembles, o.a. with Virgin Classics.
The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra is an orchestra with passion, commitment and virtuosity. The orchestra serves the province of Overijssel with concert series in Enschede, Hengelo, Zwolle and Deventer. Another important role for the orchestra is accompanying De Nationale Reisopera andprovincial choral societies. Working with top musicians from all over the world has contributed towards the orchestra achieving its aim of bringing concerts of the highest quality to a broad public. Important conductors for the orchestra were Ed Spanjaard, Rudolf Barshai, Martin Panteleev, Mark Shanahan, Vasili Petrenko and Otto Tausk. Jaap Van Zweden made an indelible impression during his period as chief conductor and set the orchestra well and truly on the map. He will return frequently as guest conductor. Many great international soloists have worked with the orchestra – Gidon Kremer, Natalia Gutman, Heinrich Schiff, Jean-Yves Thibaudet and Charlotte Margiono to name a few.
"It appears no less than a veritable contribution, and proofs how our national amateur choirs in the past quarter century have developed positively"
De Vriend manages to let the Netherlands Symphony Orchestra sound like a vibrant baroque club, while maintaining the depth and reliability of a modern orchestra.
NRC Handelsblad, 13-6-2013
Jan Willem de Vriend paces the various sections of the finale shrewdly. I particularly appreciate the energy he brings to the music ... there's no stuffiness or sentimentality.
Music Web International, 01-5-2013
For a fresh, immediate statement that compels one's attention from start to finish, I cannot imagine anyone being disappointed by this new release which is also beautifully recorded.
Jan Willem de Vriend tackles the symphony with hearty gusto, and the choral contributions of Consensus Vocalis are particulalrly fine.
Irish Times, 19-4-2013
He develops the tonal aura that donates the piece its required greatness.
Fono Forum, 01-4-2013
The stereo-version is impressing, the surround-version is overwhelming
hifi & records, 01-3-2013