Archive for the ‘politics’ Category

Waar nog zoveel te doen is

Sunday, April 14th, 2013

Om may 1st 1963, the authority of Dutch New Guinea was handed over to Indonesia (after a brief period under UN control). At the time it was very disappointing for The Netherlands, since this was the last little tail of the colonial grandeur in the east, most of which was lost after Dutch Indonesia had to be given up following the second World War. This film is a comment on how the Dutch presented themselves, as the people who would bring the Papua’s from the stone age into the 20th century (if I find the time I will add English subtitles). The film was made with Willem Peter Meeuwissen, and with the support of various museums and institutions. It is made entirely out of archive and propaganda material. It was presented for the first time october 1st 2012 at museum and residency for the former Dutch East-Indian military Bronbeek in Arnhem, where a monument for Papua’s who have fought in the small war with the Indonesians was presented. It was impressive to share it with hundreds of Dutch Veterans and Papua’s who have witnessed this fascinating history first hand.






een klankbeeld over Nederlands Nieuw-Guinea
concept en geluid: Ivo Bol
beeld: Willem Peter Meeuwissen
Tot stand gekomen met hulp van:
Koninklijk Tehuis voor Oud-Militairen en Museum Bronbeek
Mariniersmuseum Rotterdam
Legermuseum Delft

met dank aan:
Hans van den Akker
Loes Barnard
Jan van den Boogaard
Casper van Bruggen
Marjan Groen
Sjoerd Jaarsma
Nancy Jouwe
Kees Maaswinkel
Ad Plante
Niek Ravensbergen
Andreas Schelfhout
Annelies Visser
Annegriet Wietsma
Stichting Papoea cultureel erfgoed

Beeld en Geluid Hilversum
Ad Plante
Legermuseum Delft
geluid gerealiseerd in Studio Bol
beeldmontage: W.P. Meeuwissen media

Nederlands Nieuw Guinea

Sunday, June 3rd, 2012

On may 30th I was in Deurne at the Reunion of the 41e Nieuw-Guinea bataljon Stoottroepen, infantry forces who had to defend Dutch New Guinea from Indonesian infiltrants in 1962, when we fought for and lost our last piece of colony in the East. This subject has interested me since I studied history and wrote my thesis on the subject of Dutch development policy in New Guinea. In 2012 it will be 50 years since the handover to the UN, and finally to Indonesia. After a fraudulent referendum in 1969 New Guinea became officially part of the Republic of Indonesia. Sadly the Papua’s have gotten a very bad deal, the Indonesian government has never really put much effort in developing the region or sharing the wealth of the natural resources. Not that the Dutch really had any legitimate claims to any of their colonies, but they did promise the Papua’s democracy and independence just before they left. I am preparing my work for a composition with historic audio and film material from Dutch New Guinea, which will premiere october 1st at Bronbeek in Arnhem.

I am interested in the image that the Dutch had of themselves, how they justified their colonial status and how the people that were involved look back on that. It was great talking to the old soldiers. All of them feel very bad for leaving the Papua’s after they have just been promised a concrete path to Independence. The mood at the reunion was warm, a bit melancholic. More than 300 people showed up, old soldiers, some with their wives. After the group photo there was a great performance of the Papuan Dance group Cendrawasih Papua.



Het boek, het volk en de strijd

Wednesday, December 2nd, 2009

Geert Wilders must be our most famous politician abroad by now. He travels a lot to the US and other countries to raise funds, give speeches and talk about his film. He is the leader of the PVV (Freedom Party) that keeps coming first or second in the polls. This may or may not surprise you, but it means people are angry and afraid. The party has one member (Wilders) and is strongly build around the great leader. Recently Wilders has started to include some leftist ideas, such as better care for the elderly and fierce opposition to reform of the pension system, to his rather right wing, xenophobic populist agenda, which makes his party all the more dangerous. There was a huge buildup to the “release” of his film Fitna, which is (whatever you think about the message or content) a very uninspiring, cliche cut and paste job with lots of angry men with long beards and 9/11 images.

The Qur’an has been compared by Wilders with Hitlers’ Mein Kampf. I have taken this comparison as inspiration for the new piece “Het Boek, het volk en de strijd” (“The book, the people and the struggle”), and added a (much less crazy) comparison between Geert Wilders and the late Dutch National Socialist Party NSB. The piece for saxophone quartet and electronics is written together with Bas Apswoude and Olivier Sliepen. It is not so much a traditional chamber music piece, more a mix between a radio play and a musical composition. It will be premiered in a concert with me and the Amstel Quartet December 11 at the Toonzaal in Den Bosch.

Excerpt from the “tape” part of “Het Boek, het volk en de strijd”

The Bailout

Monday, March 23rd, 2009

“The Bailout” is a piece for a Saxophone quartet and live sound manipulation using the LiSa and JunXion software, developed by STEIM in Amsterdam. The piece is written by me and Ties Mellema and it is inspired by the history of the auto industry in Detroit and the “auto bailout” by the US government. It has premièred March 20th 2009 in a concert that I did with the Amstel Quartet in the Detroit Institute of Arts.

The Bailout, Ivo Bol & Amstel Quartet 20.03.2009

When the saxophones play a loud note, they start one of the sound files I have collected; text fragments from opponents and advocates of the bailout plan such as Rush Limbaugh, Bush, Obama and Rick Wagener, the CEO of GM, and excerpts from old movies describing Detroit and its Auto industry during the twenties and sixties. In this way the instruments “talk” and “discuss” with each other. I am manipulating sounds using the Wiimote and the Korg Kaoss Pad (as midi controller).

We played at the Diego Rivera Court under the magnificent masterpiece Detroit Industry. It was the fitting scene. Not surprisingly the mood is not upbeat in Detroit, but the audience was great and the museum seems an oasis with its free music and film program, and young and old playing chess in the museum at Friday night. Talking with soundman Tony during a ride to the Guitar Centre (the only music shop in the area, hard to believe) I got the impression that Detroit is not cherishing its great musical past enough as a way of promoting culture and ultimately the economy. The lost car industry is never coming back but who has not heard of Detroit Soul and Techno? Detroit rise again!