About the Netherlands Radio Choir

The Groot Omroepkoor is special and unique. It is, in fact, the only Dutch professional choir for the large symphonic repertoire. It is also still closely affiliated with Dutch Public Broadcasting. We are proud of our professional Hilversum choir. I think it is special and beautiful that, on behalf of the college, I can award the Groot Omroepkoor with the municipal pin.
(Mayor Broertjes at the presentation of the Hilversum municipal pin to the Groot Omroepkoor, 25 November 2020)

We are the best choir in the Gooi region'. That winged statement has been going around for decades among the members of the Groot Omroepkoor. It is an ironic understatement for the only professional broadcasting choir in Europe. You might say it is the Formula 1 of broadcasting choirs.
75 years of Groot Omroepkoor: 75 years in which the choir developed into a vital company with its own identity. A unique company with a large dose of adventurous spirit for the future, an eye for the present and respect for the past.
(Oswin Schneeweisz, author of the jubilee book 'Stemgeluiden', about the 75-year old Groot Omroepkoor. Stemgeluiden' is on sale for € 19 (including postage) and can be ordered from the Muziekcentrum van de Omroep via this link )

I am very happy with my appointment as Principal Conductor of the Groot Omroepkoor. From our first project together, I felt a genuine connection with this great ensemble, a jewel in the European classical landscape. For me, the choir is defined by the intensity of its sound, by its humanity. I look forward to working together to discover new repertoire and explore new ways of connecting with our audiences.
(Benjamin Goodson on his appointment as Principal Conductor of the Netherlands Radio Choir, September 2020)

I started here in 2000 as assistant conductor, and then got to know the choir and also many people from the inside. I then had an inside look and was able to learn a lot from Martin Wright and Simon Halsey. But very much then I also learned about the versatility of the ensemble and gained an appreciation for the Groot Omroepkoor as an instrument, for what the choir does, and for how it does it.
The Groot Omroepkoor is the vocal ensemble for the larger repertoire, it is absolutely unique in that. The GOK also has a very clear profile, both in modern and symphonic repertoire.
(Peter Dijkstra, former first guest conductor of the Groot Omroepkoor)

The three-part CD box set of György Kurtág's choral and ensemble works is in one word overwhelming. His soul-shattering sounds are sublimely performed by Reinbert de Leeuw and others. The recording is also flawless. This box set is already historic, a monument to the Hungarian master [...]. The Songs of Despair and Sorrow for choir and instruments are not performed very often either. In just under 20 minutes, the Netherlands Radio Choir switches between ultra-soft whispering, ear-splitting screeching, profoundly sad lamentation and excited merriment. Sometimes we imagine ourselves to be at a Russian village festival.
(Thea Derks, Cultureel Persbureau, about the cd-box György Kurtág: Complete works for Ensemble and Choir, performed by Asko|Schönberg and Groot Omroepkoor conducted by Reinbert de Leeuw)


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