Willem Twee studios
pictures: Yannick van de Wijngaert
Have you been searching for a unique sound for ages? Then a visit to our studios, a workplace for electronic music, could certainly be worthwhile. In Studio 1 you move among analog equipment from the 50s and 60s. In Studio 2 you will mostly find synthesizers from the 70s and 80s. The very first electronic sounds were made with instruments you will find here in the studios. Working with this hardware will make you listen to, and work with music in a different, unique way. Instead of working with a mouse and screen you work hands-on with real instruments. It is a highly intuitive work method that produces a surprising, challenging result again and again. This makes working in our studios a personal adventure for everyone.
When working in the studios, you can always rely on one of our employees, who are makers themselves. They can offer you sound-technical and artistic support. Composers, producers and musicians, but also all other interested people are welcome to rent the studios for one or more day-parts. You can always take the recorded sounds with you for further (digital) processing.
In this workspace you will find analog testing and measuring equipment from the 50s and 60s that are not primarily intended for making music, but can be used to this end. Some of these devices were once seen in the first electronic music studios where Stockhausen worked, among others. The tape recorder technique, an essential component of the first electronic music and musique concrete, is also present in this studio. The studio has sinus and pulse oscillators, various filters and the like, as well as equipment that was not used for electronic music before. Together, it essentially forms one large, unique synthesizer.
Blawan: “The machines here are 70 years old, but in perfect condition. They are much more stable than the gear produced today. So technically it makes sense to use these machines – the first generation of electronics”.
In the second studio you can work with an extensive set of synthesizer instruments from the 70s and 80s. The showpiece is the ARP 2500, of which only 100 were made in the 1970s. The Willem Twee studios are one of the few places in the world where this Stradivarius among synths can be played publicly. Besides the ARP 2500 the studio also includes the EMS Putney, ARP 2600 and Serge Modular, among others. It is a large modular analog paradise, and for this reason ‘s-Hertogenbosch has already been coined ‘Synth City’.
Courses and education
Do you want to learn how to work with these instruments and learn about analog sound synthesis and composition? In the studios courses and workshops are given regularly by experienced teachers. Click here for the available courses.
The Willem Twee studios also work in partnership with various educational institutes. Students of the AMPA, HKU, ArtEZ and AKV ST. Joost, among others, have already followed lessons in composition and analog sound synthesis here.
– Albert van Abbe working in Studio 1 –
Adjacent to the studios, in a former synagogue, is the Willem Twee toonzaal. Thanks to cable connections between the toonzaal and the studios there are excellent possibilities for presenting and recording sound material in the concert hall. The unique acoustics, the church organ that is present here and the Steinway grand piano offer many opportunities for creating electro-acoustic music. In the hall where concerts are given regularly, the FAQ Festival for electronic music is held annually in cooperation with the Willem Twee studios.
Looking for that unique sound
Countless national but especially international artists, including Blawan, Daedelus, The Analogues, Kate NV, British Murder Boys (Regis & Surgeon), Terrance Dixon, BJ Nilson, Jonny Nash, Andrea Taeggi, Albert van Abbe and Jameszoo have already used the studios to find their unique sound.
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Willem Twee studios cooperates with
FAQ Festival, Fontys Conservatorium Tilburg, Muziektechnologie HKU, ArtEZ MediaMusic
and is part of the international network:
Electronic Music Foundation New York, Musiques & Recherches Brussel, ICEM Folkwang Uni der Kunste Essen, en EMS Stockholm
With thanks to: