Thomas Oliemans

Sings and plays songs by Schubert and Bannink

icon-timezo 5 juni 17:00-18:00

icon-pointerSalon Podium

Thomas Oliemans

For a whole hour, Thomas Oliemans treats the audience to the most beautiful songs by Franz Schubert and Harry Bannink. While the latter was born more than a century after the former had died, both were masters of the song in their own unique way. 

Oliemans: ‘Back when I was still unsure about which musical direction I wanted to take: singing, playing the piano, focus more on opera or, on the contrary, cabaret songs, I made the bold move – I think I was fifteen at the time – to perform for Harry Bannink at his home. I sang and played a few of his songs, but also songs by Schubert, Mahler and Youp van ‘t Hek. Over the years, I was welcome to visit and perform for him on a regular basis and he would give me advice and share nuggets of wisdom with me, which continue to inspire me daily. His extremely precise, nuanced eye (and ear) for harmony and melody in relation to the lyrics, finding a balance between expressive singing and expression through song, and the right accompaniment that should always promote the intelligibility of the lyrics. And, he showed me how the great masters like Schubert did this fantastically well and how and why Schubert, Grieg, Brahms, Bach but also Bacharach inspired him.'

'Harry Bannink didn’t like to call himself a composer, preferring the label of tone-setter instead. He considered himself first and foremost a craftsman. As if it was just a matter of piecing the notes and words together in the right order and in the right way, with a bit of tinkering here and there. That, to me, is even more proof of Harry Bannink’s huge talent and skill: instinctively, he knew almost instantly where he wanted to go with lyrics and thanks to his great artistry, fantasy and imagination, he did often manage to shape them with lightning speed and expertise.'

‘Schubert, too, was known for his ability to create at super-fast speed thanks to his lyrical and musical eloquence: I’m often amazed to find out that, song-wise, in the case of some of his major masterpieces, sometimes up to six of them were written on the same day. Schubert wrote wonderful symphonies and string quartets and tried to break through as an opera writer his whole life, but it is in the small intimate form that his genius really shines through. And this is exactly the art form in which he was the absolute master of the song.' 

'The natural habitat of both Schubert and Bannink was at the piano. As soon as their songs were ready, they would play and sing them themselves. Bannink would record his on tape and send them to the singers for whom they had been written, while there are many accounts from Schubert’s friends about how he would perform his literally freshly written work that same night at one of the so-called Schubertiades. There really isn’t a better place or way to explore and rediscover the worlds of these two greats than by singing at the piano!’

Artists and performers

Thomas Oliemans, bariton


Liederen van Franz Schubert en Harry Bannink.


€ 22,50
€ 11,25 (jongeren 19 t/m 30 jaar)
€ 2,50 (kinderen t/m 18 jaar)

Prijzen exclusief € 2,50 service- en transactiekosten per bestelling.

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