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About this website

Eduard Reeser (1908 - 2002)

Eduard Reeser

Alphons Diepenbrock (2 September 1862 – 5 April 1921) is generally considered the most important Dutch composer from the years around 1900. This website in the Dutch and English language not only presents descriptions of all his works – completed and uncompleted – but also allows you to browse through the autographs of his compositions and to listen to fragments or complete recordings of his pieces. A digital monument in honour of the 150th anniversary of Diepenbrock’s birthday.

The idea to compile an oeuvre catalogue of the works by Diepenbrock came from Prof. Dr Eduard Reeser, who also produced the monumental, ten-volume series Alphons Diepenbrock – Brieven en documenten (Alphons Diepenbrock – Letters and Documents, 1962-1998). Immediately after completing the series, the expert on Diepenbrock, in collaboration with Odilia Vermeulen and Ton Braas, made an outline for cataloguing the composer’s oeuvre. Reeser was in favour of ordering the catalogue based on the date of composition, rather than on their genre or instrumentation. He also believed the uncompleted works should be included. Thus, a chronological overview would be given that clearly shows Diepenbrock’s stylistic development and his changing interest in genres and language regions. There were several experiments with creating uniform descriptions, accompanied by one page of music with the beginning of the composition, or by several pages if the work is large-scale or consists of more than one part.

The Royal Society for Music History of the Netherlands (KVNM) was enthusiastic about this form of presentation that is unique in the world of musicology, and agreed to produce the publication. To this purpose the KVNM founded the Stichting Reeser-Publikatiën in 2003, whose main aim was to realise the publication Reeser had in mind: “The Music of Alphons Diepenbrock. A Catalogue”. Besides appointing a team of authors and a chief editor, applications for funding were submitted to the major funds. Right from the beginning the board of the society took the aspect of quality into account by establishing a reading committee.

In 2011 it was decided to abandon the concept of a publication in book form and go for a digital presentation instead. Not only does a modern medium such as a website offer greater accessibility and more flexibility than a printed oeuvre catalogue, a digital platform also makes it possible to link related information to the descriptions of the works. Commissioned by the Stichting Reeser-Publikatiën, Trilobiet Internetdiensten in Rotterdam has developed the website. They are also responsible for building the database. A supervision committee appointed by the board of the society was involved in the design and the development of the site.

This oeuvre catalogue would not have come about without the generous financial support of a dear old friend of Eduard Reeser, who also contributed towards the publication of the last four volumes of the series Brieven en documenten, but who always wished to remain anonymous. The KVNM, the Netherlands Music Institute (NMI) and the Stichting Reeser-Publikatiën are very grateful to this nameless patron and his family.

The same applies to the contributions of a dozen of funds who have helped make this project possible (see colophon). The translation of the descriptions of the works has been financed thanks to a substantial group of supporters of Alphons Diepenbrock who wanted to promote his musical heritage abroad.

Through its diversity, this online oeuvre catalogue will certainly stimulate interest in the works by Diepenbrock. We proudly present this website in the hope that it will be used fruitfully and with pleasure by many people.

On behalf of the Stichting Reeser-Publikatiën,
Cees Broekhuijsen