The Amsterdam Partch Project

Scordatura_833DThe Amsterdam Partch Project is an ongoing process to develop the Partch chamber music repertoire. With every new instrument and  every new work we deepen our knowledge of thOur Partch instrumentse Partch heritage and we are able to share more of his beautiful music.

Nieuwe programma’s voor Nederland:  hier

Read more about our Partch instruments here

London Concerts September 2019:

Scordatura Ensemble presented The Amsterdam Partch Project:

20 September 16.00 at Trinity- Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance
Blackheath halls Recital Room, London

21 September 12.30 – 16.30 at Colourscape Festival, Clapham Common park, London

Alfrun Schmid, Reinier van Houdt, Chris Rainier, Elisabeth Smalt, Lucia Mense (pictures below) at the Colourscape Festival







14.10.18: Concert at the James Joyce Festival: Joyce is in the air- Amsterdam 
See the programme here


Rose Petal Jam Concert Tour 17-18

Our ROSE PETAL JAM Tour was a concert tour with fifteen concerts in Holland as well as one in Hamburg and Londen, featuring Harry Partch’s earliest chamber music. In this project we made a giant step in our research of Partch’s work. With thanks to the funding organisations we were able to build new copies of several instruments. We did a lot of research to find out how to actually play them, as the music is written in an unusual notation and scale.  By playing all these concerts we learned the new repertoire, coming further and further each time. While the project was going we combined our research with educational projects and workshops on conservatories and universities, and  after each concert the audience was invited to see and try the instruments.

We are interested to share this experience not only with listeners but also with composers of the new generation.  Harry Partch (1901-1974) developed his work completely on his own. For us nowadays his unique work offers us an example of ‘just intonation’ which in this 21st century attracts attention again, after a century of ‘tempered’ tuning. In Rose Petal Jam’s New Li Po Songs project, eight composers from different international backgrounds wrote songs for us. As an education project, six young composers of the Royal Conservatory in The Hague composed works for us. 

Concerts Rose Petal Jam 2017/18:

13.05.17 Den Haag Festival Dag in de Branding – Korzo 15.00
15.05.17 Amsterdam Splendor –  20.00 pre-concert talk 19.00
18.05.17 Rotterdam Seriously Festival /Classical NEXT – De Doelen 13.00
07.06.17 Hamburg  Blurred Edges Festival Students presentation 19.00, concert +- 19.30
24.06.17 Zutphen Dat Bolwerck Kunstcentrum 20.15
21.07.17 s’ Graveland Wonderfeel Festival 17.00
15.10.17 Nijmegen Galerie Marzee   16.00
22.10.17 Amsterdam De Ruimte  15.00
23.10.17 Den Haag Royal Conservatory Kees van Baaren Zaal 20.00
10.03.18 Amsterdam  Amsterdam Marimba Weekend 20.15
08.04.18 Assen De Muziekkamer Podium Zuidhaege – 12.00
10.04.18 Tilburg De Link 20.30
11.04.18  Den Haag Korzo Spring Festival 19.30
27.04.18  Rotterdam  OCW crimmp concert 20.30
28.04.18  Rotterdam  OCW crimmp  concert 20.30
29.04.18  Rotterdam  OCW crimmp concert 20.30
18.06.18 London Café Oto Dalston 19.30

Education Projects Rose Petal jam 2017/18:

General: We presented JAM sessions – which meant that the audience could try out the instruments- after our concerts.
07.06.17 Hamburg organised their own student project about Partch, before our concert. The kids had made their own instruments and played a self made composition.
19.10.17 University of Amsterdam, Scordatura Studio workshop + mini concert for Musicology Students in collaboration with  Maarten Beirens
23.10.17 The Hague Royal Conservatory, Kees van Baaren zaal:  Start of the Partch Composers Project in collaboration with the Conservatory. First meeting with the students  – free concert for the composition class of Martijn Padding and Peter Adriaansz, as well as other students. With lecture by Huib Ramaer and Samuel Vriezen
09-11-2017  Amsterdam Sweelinck Conservatory Huib Ramaer gives presentation about Partch for musicology students of Saskia Tornquist
10.11.17 Amsterdam Scordatura Studio Young composers of The Hague Royal Conservatory and their coach Peter Adriaansz visit the instruments. The composers write their pieces in the coming months
22.11.17 AmsterdaDe Roode Bioscoop demonstration of the Partch tuning for Cor Bakker and friends
08 and 09.03.18 Amsterdam Scordatura Studio: The composers of The Hague come to present and discuss their pieces
10.03.18 Marimba Weekend Amsterdam, Workshop by Aart Strootman, the maker of the newly built Diamond Marimba, introduced by  Huib Ramaer. With (the very first) live performance on the instrument.
11.04.18 The Hague Korzo: Spring Festival  final concert with the new pieces of Robert Coleman, Vitali Karagkezidis, Darina Zurkova, Lauge Dideriksen, James Alexandropoulos-McEwan and Orestes Willemen.

Parallel to the Rose Petal Jam Tour our guitarist Chris Rainier presented the following solo Partch concerts:
09.06.17 – In Situ Art Society , BONN, GERMANY
08.06.17 – ON: Neue Musik Köln, COLOGNE, GERMANY
11.10.17 – La Générale, PARIS, FRANCE

The Rose Petal Jam Line-up:

scordutura amsterdam Mei 2017

Players Rose Petal Jam tour:
Chris Rainier voice Adapted Guitars I and II
Reinier van Houdt Chromelodeon/keyboard Bass Marimba
Lucas van Helsdingen, Tin hobo, reeds, Indian drum, clarinet
Lucia Mense Double flageolet, Tin flutes, recorders
Samuel Vriezen Kithara I, Flexatone, Mazda Marimba
Alfrun Schmid voice, Harmonic Canon, harp
Elisabeth Smalt viola, Adapted Viola, Diamond Marimba
Huib Ramaer introduction about Partch on demand

New Li Po Songs

Next to performing Partch’s original works we have a composer’s project called New Li Po Songs. With his Seventeen Lyrics by Li Po for Adapted Viola and Intoning Voice, written in the early 1930’s, Harry Partch developed his own unique voice. These wonderful compositions bear the seeds of his total oeuvre, such as the scale and notation. In our project we asked eight composers from different backgrounds to write for us ‘New Li Po songs’: Anne LaBerge, Miranda Driessen, Lisa Illean, Anna MikhailovaChris Rainier, Chris Smalt, Aart Strootman and Samuel Vriezen.

rehearsing New Li Po Songs at Studio Scordatura

History The Amsterdam Partch Project begins in 2001 with the concert tour The Truth of Tune, initiated by Huib Ramaer and developed by Bob Gilmore (1961-2015) who was the founder and artistic leader of Trio Scordatura. (In 2015 we changed the name to Scordatura Ensemble) Having enjoyed the work on Partch all these years in close collaboration with Bob – he was a musicologist and the writer of Harry Partch, a biography – Scordatura Ensemble is now ready to present ROSE PETAL JAM.

Extra Jam After the concert we offered a meet-and-greet with our Partch instruments and with the players. In addition we brought a supply of biological rose petal jam (following Partch’s own recipe), made and presented by Harm Mouw of  Harm’s Kitchen!

Screen Shot 2017-04-08 at 15.41.24

Rose Petal Jam werd mogelijk gemaakt door de steun van  Fonds Podiumkunsten, Fonds 21, Prins Bernhard Cultuur Fonds- Fonds voor Hedendaagse Muziek, Amsterdams Fonds voor de Kunst, Société Gaviniès, VSB Fonds, Gilles Hondius Foundation, Stichting Fonds voor de Geld- en Effectenhandel,  Kattendijke/Drucker Stichting

Daarnaast willen wij de privédonateurs die ons steunden via Kickstarter of andere kanalen van harte bedanken.


fpk_logo-web-m   Print   screen-shot-2016-12-27-at-15-31-42   screen-shot-2016-12-27-at-15-42-26   VSBfonds PAY-OFF CMYK Prins-Bernhard-Cultuurfonds_RGB_logo-800x846px       screen-shot-2016-12-28-at-17-11-45          Fonds 21.Logo


Our Crowdfunding campaign on Kickstarter for a Diamond Marimba was a big success! Thanks to your generous gifts we have a Diamond Marimba, built by Aart Strootman.


Follow Scordatura Ensemble:facebook-successful-in-raising-over-10-million-in-two-days-towards-nepal-earthquake-disaster   vogel  @scordaturaense1

Amsterdam-based ensemble performing music using new tuning systems and microtonality