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Latest News: Fellow Spotlight

Meet Tamar Brüggemann (Netherlands; 2016 ISPA Fellow)

Monday, August 15, 2016   (0 Comments)

Meet Tamar Brüggemann, Managing Director of Holland Baroque and founding co-director of Wonderfeel. The second edition of Wonderfeel just concluded July 23 so we caught up with Tamar to learn more about the festival and the work that lead its inaugural year in 2015:

“As a professional I started working in (early) music at the age of 19. From 2001 through 2013 I worked in different departments of the Early Music Organization, famous for its Utrecht festival, the world’s largest early music festival with more than 180 events in 10 days. During this time I also worked for shorter periods of time for several Dutch early music ensembles like Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra & Choir, New Dutch Academy and Camerata Trajectina.

In 2013 I became the managing director of Holland Baroque. A radically versatile baroque orchestra; we like to explore other musical styles – jazz, folk, French chansons, klezmer, singer songwriting – without losing sight of our baroque foundation and the experience we want to establish for and together with our audience.

Since 2012 I’ve also been developing, together with my co-director Georges Mutsaerts, Wonderfeel, an outdoor festival for classical music, located in the woods in the centre of the Netherlands. The format takes its cue from pop festivals, with seven stages and a continuous programme from 12 AM until midnight, featuring (inter)national artists in 90 concerts over 3 days. The first two editions of the festival in 2015 and 2016 were a great success, inviting the Dutch national newspapers to remark “Wonderfeel is a fairy tale” (de Volkskrant), “A festival to love” (De Telegraaf) and “Wonderfeel is unique in the world” (NRC Handelsblad).”

When asked what she hopes to contribution to the international field of the performing arts, Tamar noted: “With Wonderfeel I’d like to show the world that the definition of ‘classical music’ can be stretched as far as you like it. Just look at the pictures (below): would you’ve ever guessed they’re taken at a festival for classical music?”

Photo by Juri Hiensch
Photo by Juri Hiensch

Tamar attended the New York 2014 ISPA Congress as a Global Fellow and returned in 2016 thanks to the generous support of Dutch Performing Arts / Performing Arts Fund NL. When asked about the impact of her first ISPA experience, Tamar shared:

“A golden ticket to the world of the performing arts. That’s how it felt, when I stepped into Times Center for the first day of the ISPA 2014 congress. Like entering the large Chocolate Factory of Mr Wonka: you know you’ll love it, but you don’t know what to expect, who you will encounter and where exactly you will end up. 

In four days my arts network extended to a global size, due to all those inspiring arts managers from all over the world. But the congress did manage, despite its size, to operate on a very personal level. As a fellow I felt (and still feel) very much looked after. ISPA lifted me from the day-to-day issues to an interesting helicopter view on many subjects that everyone in the performing arts will come across if they take the time to look at their work closely, putting things in a larger perspective, reflecting on the past and most of all looking at the future. Leaving New York City I have a lot to chew on and most of it tastes really sweet.”

In 2016, ISPA brought 46 Fellows from around the world to the New York Congress. We know it’s impossible to meet all these emerging leaders onsite so we’re highlighting the 2016 ISPA Fellows in features via the members-only monthly newsletter Network and on the website.