This is your composer speaking: Steven Kamperman

11 November 2022 | 14:45 - 15:45Filmzaal 4

Panel text in Dutch

From November 2022 to February 2023, clarinetist and composer Steven Kamperman will take up residence at the Van Doesburgh House in the Paris suburb of Meudon. During his residency, Kamperman is working on two compositions closely intertwined with the Van Doesburgh House and the city of Paris: Paris En Fer (a composition for Calefax) and Ik ben sot, a composition based on the artistic principles of Theo van Doesburg and his Dadaist alter ego I.K. Bonset (for L’instant donné, ensemble for contemporary music). Kamperman also resumes collaborations with French musicians who helped shape his career, including Valentin Clastrier and Michel Godard.

In a live-from-Paris interview Kamperman will talk about his work and approach: ‘During my residency in Paris, I want to first of all immerse myself in the city itself. By this I do not primarily mean the well-known postcard pictures, but rather the chipped ironwork, the moldy quays, in short: the frayed edges of the city. For me, there is a lot of beauty in that weathered area and I want to capture it in one or more compositions. In addition, of course, I live and work in that special house of Theo van Doesburg, who was very influential as the founder of De Stijl. In particular, the clash within De Stijl between rational principles and the intuitive interests me very much as a composer. I want to devote a series of works more focused on improvisation to that. And in the meantime, the plan is of course to play with lots of people, thus expanding my own (and who knows, their) field of vision!’

The residency at the Van Doesburghuis encourages artistic development and deepening of creator practice. The Parisian studio house that Theo van Doesburg designed for himself and his wife Nelly in the late 1920s offers an inspiring environment to conduct research, develop ideas or create new work. In April 2022, Performing Arts Fund NL launched the application process through an open call. Based on his submission, the residency was awarded to Kamperman.


Steven Kamperman. Clarinettist and composer Steven Kamperman likes to take the listener and himself across borders. His career is witness to this: initially active as a pure jazz musician, he discovered non-Western music and toured the world for a decade with his Turkish-Dutch ensemble Baraná. He then wrote two successful contemporary operas that were much acclaimed by the press. He formed an innovative folk duo with hurdy-gurdy legend Valentin Clastrier, and with HOT Het Orgel Trio he plays wide-ranging and theatrical jazz in churches. And in addition to all this, in recent years he has also developed into a drummer. Even within one project, the influences are often diverse, from early music to modern dance music, always with a twist. Underneath this love for the unknown lies an urge for unvarnished expression. The result is a very recognizable sound, an abrasive beauty, in which ancient and progressive sounds merge in a natural fashion.

Bas Pauw (Performing Arts Fund NL). Bas Pauw is programme manager by Performing Arts Fund NL. The Performing Arts Fund NL is the national fund for professional music, (music) theatre and dance in the Netherlands. It supports artists, ensembles, and festivals in the Netherlands, and it actively promotes the Dutch performing arts on the international stage.

Interview by:
Co de Kloet. Co studied as a classical recorder player and saxophonist at the Conservatory Hilversum. Since the beginning of 1980 he works as a musician, composer, radio maker, music teacher and producer. At the NOS (now NTR) he focusses on radio- and television programs. Music, soundscapes and documentaries are a big factor in his work. He developed projects with Todd Rundgren, Frank Zappa, Brian Eno, Steve Vai, Michiel Borstlap, George Duke, Mike Keneally, Gary Lucas and Terry Bozzio. Next to music producer and program maker he is currently music supervisor and presenter for NTR, NPO Radio 1, 4 and 6.


This is your composer speaking: Steven Kamperman

Van november 2022 tot en met februari 2023 neemt klarinettist en componist Steven Kamperman zijn intrek in het Van Doesburghuis in de Parijse voorstad Meudon. Tijdens zijn residentie werkt Kamperman aan twee composities die nauw met het Van Doesburghuis en de stad Parijs verweven zijn: Paris En Fer (een compositie voor Calefax) en Ik ben sot, een compositie gebaseerd op de artistieke principes van Theo van Doesburg en zijn dadaïstische alter ego I.K. Bonset (voor L’instant donné, ensemble voor hedendaagse muziek). Ook herneemt Kamperman samenwerkingen met Franse musici die zijn carrière mede hebben vormgegeven, waaronder Valentin Clastrier en Michel Godard.

In een live interview vanuit Parijs zal Kamperman praten over zijn werk en aanpak: “Tijdens de residentie in Parijs wil ik mij allereerst onderdompelen in de stad zelf. Daarmee bedoel ik niet primair de bekende ‘mooie’ plaatjes, maar eigenlijk juist het afgebladderde ijzerwerk, de vermolmde kades, kortom: de rafelranden van de stad. In dat verweerde zit voor mij veel schoonheid en die wil ik in een of meerdere composities vangen. Daarnaast woon en werk ik dan natuurlijk in dat bijzondere huis van Theo van Doesburg, die als oprichter van De Stijl zeer invloedrijk is geweest. Met name de botsing binnen De Stijl tussen rationele principes en het intuïtieve interesseert ook mij als componist heel erg. Ik wil daar een serie stukken aan wijden die meer op improvisatie gericht zijn. En ondertussen is het plan natuurlijk om met heel veel mensen te gaan spelen, en zo mijn eigen (en wie weet hun) blikveld te verruimen!”

De residentie in het Van Doesburghuis stimuleert artistieke ontwikkeling en verdieping van de makerspraktijk. De Parijse atelierwoning die Theo van Doesburg eind jaren twintig voor zichzelf en zijn vrouw Nelly ontwierp biedt een inspirerende omgeving voor het uitvoeren van onderzoek, het uitwerken van ideeën of het maken van nieuw werk. In april 2022 lanceerde het Fonds Podiumkunsten het aanmeldproces door middel van een open oproep.

Steven Kamperman
Bas Pauw (Fonds Podiumkunsten)

Co de Kloet