Willem Breuker

Kees de Jongen

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AllMusic Review by

Kees de Jongen is a recording of music by Dutch composer Willem Breuker for a dance/theater production of the same name. The ten-piece ensemble is directed by Kollektief member Bernard Hunnekink, though none of its musicians are otherwise associated with Breuker, and one track, "Requiem voor Rosa Overbeek," also utilizes an unidentified chorus. Perhaps due to the prominence of the two strings and the oboe, the character of the music is a bit more classical than jazz, though the dominant influence, as in much of Breuker's work, is Kurt Weill. Indeed, the lovely title theme sounds as though it might have been extracted intact from an unknown Weill opus. In many ways, this disc sounds more similar to Breuker's early work in stage and film scoring such as Johann van der Keuken: Music for His Films than to other non-Kollektief work from around this time, which is all to the good. The Andean tinges to his flute writing, the minimalist touches in the strings., and the earthy worker-song stylings of several of the pieces all harken back to a younger, more idealistically motivated Breuker than some of the plodding soundtracks he composed while in his fifties. These elements and others make Kees de Jongen one of the more recommendable examples from the '90s of his music for theater.

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