Jos Zwaanenburg

Jos Zwaanenburg graduated with distinction in 1985 from Amsterdam’s Sweelinck Conservatory, where he studied flute and composition. In the preceding year he was one of the prize winners at the Gaudeamus International Interpreters Competition, receiving an honorary mention for his performances of his own compositions. Jos has performed extensively throughout Europe, the U.S., South America, India, the Russian Federation and Japan, solo, as a member of various orchestras, as a soloist with orchestras and as a member of chamber music ensembles playing classical as well as improvised music, and on many radio and television broadcasts.
He is known for his research into extended playing techniques for the flute, in which he combines his interest in performance, theatre, composition and live electronics. In 1986 and 1987, Jos initiated the development of the open-hole alto flute, in collaboration with the Dutch flute makers Eva Kingma and Dirk Kuiper. Currently he is a lecturer at the Conservatory of Amsterdam where he teaches live electronics and the Contemporary Music through Non-Western Techniques course. He is an International Research Fellow at Oxford Brookes University.

Contact microphones for traditional instruments
Live electronics is taking an increasingly prominent place in Western music practice, especially now that accessibility has improved with increased affordability. As a result, different live electronic solutions are developed for each player, piece and composer. Can such idiosyncrasy – specifically in the area of traditional instruments extended by live electronics – be combated? And can a satisfactory method be developed for describing the musical functionality of electronics? Testing contact microphones and defining their (musical) functionality should lead to a standardised approach: a library of scores and contact microphones will be compiled for all instruments (classical and jazz) taught as a main subject at the Amsterdam Conservatory (CvA), which will support the training of instrumentalists to work with live electronics. Students of all main subjects will be involved in the test programme. This research will lead up to the CvA’s relocation in the summer of 2008 to its new building, where a separate studio for live electronics is planned.


Selected publications

'Live electronics, standardization and tradition', Dutch Journal of
Music Theory, volume 11, number 2, May 2006