Willem van Ekeren at Fringe Fest '08 Staff

Written by Staff Published on 18.04.2008 10:59:13 (updated on 18.04.2008) Reading time: 2 minutes

at Fringe Fest ’08

Baroque/Blues-fusion challenges Prague’s musical convention at Nosticovo divadlo

Piano-vocalist Willem van Ekeren stars in BACH-BUKOWSKI, being the first Dutch performer at the Prague Fringe Festival. This classically inspired jazzy poetry concert is a unique blend of Baroque and Bohemia. Driving counterpoint flows in union with the evocative writing of American beat-poet Charles Bukowski. Willem van Ekeren weaves together 22 poems of Bukowski´s work with 22 parts of ‘The Well-Tempered Clavier´ of J.S. Bach. The texts are sung with a raw bluesy voice over authentic baroque music played on the piano.

The famous preludes and fugues form a flowing, essential part of each song. Willem van Ekeren simply adds a voice-line to combine the two media. The melody, phrasing and Willem van Ekeren´s voice support each other as the poem reaches out to the audience. This melts into Bach´s music. Reminiscent of Tom Waits, Randy Newman, Bob Dylan, and Billie Holliday, BACH-BUKOWSKI crosses genre and style, thus creating a classically inspired kind of lounge jazz.

The Bukowski poems from ‘The Last Night of the Earth Poems’ (1992), are powerfully evocative observations of everyday life. Bukowski (known for e.g. ‘Barfly’, ‘Women’ and ‘Tales of Ordinary Madness’) points out the problems we encounter and shows how we are able to survive. The anti-father of contemporary American poets puts everything into perspective, in his own philosophical and occasionally witty way.

The first BACH-BUKOWSKI CD, with 13 songs, was released in 2003. Since then, Willem has performed in Holland, Belgium and Germany: regular concerts and festival activities such as Bach festivals, musical events and literary festivals. He also performed at the Edinburgh Fringe Festival. At concerts, not only fans of both Bach and Bukowski have been swept off their feet. Willem is  now performing nine more Bach-Bukowski songs. Three of them already are recorded on a mini-CD.

BACH-BUKOWSKI is a musical melting pot that subverts form with a style all of its own.

Venue:  Nosticovo divadlo, Nosticova 2a, Malá Strana, Praha 1, Fringe Festival
Dates:  Sunday 25 May to Sunday 1 June
Time:   9.15 PM (21.15 hr)
Ticketstream:   tel +420 224 263 049
More info:


Welcome to the citys eagerly awaited annual marathon of theatre, dance, comedy, music and film from around the globe. All shows are in English, Czech or are non-verbal and are programmed so that you can see up to 6 shows a day and over 30 shows over the 8 days of Fringe Festival Praha. Shows take place from the afternoon to late evening, most last for an hour or so with time between to zip from venue to venue and grab a bite to eat. Enjoy a warm welcome at our fringe club where you can join the fun, meet the artists and swap notes with other fringe goers on your “hot tickets” for the day…its the fringe way from Edinburgh to Adelaide, now entering year seven here in Prague.

Tickets are 150 CZK.
Student tickets 50 CZK (only available on the door, on the day).

Fringe Voucher for 5 tickets available at Tickestream and can be exchanged for tickets on the day for 600 CZK (including handling fee) (ie 120 CZK per ticket)

Celebrate the arrival of the Fringe! Sunday May 25th – all tickets only 100 CZK

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