Crisis forces Bimhuis to add pop music

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The crisis has also hit Amsterdam concert halls, which has forced Bimhuis to add pop music to the line-ups. BimPop sounds like an initiative with an aim to bring a new public to the Bimhuis. But Una Bergin, programmer for the new concert series says "It would be nice if that happens, but that isn't what it's really about." "BimPop wasn't invented by Bimhuis itself, but it's my initiative", she says. Una Bergin (30) is the daughter of the South African jazz musician Sean Bergin, who passed away in 2012. He made Amsterdam his base in the 70s, and was a regular feature at the Bimhuis. Last summer, Una Bergin worked with Huub van Riel, the steady programmer for the Bimhuis, on a commemorative concert for her father.

"More than thirty musicians participated, all people with whom my father regularly performed." The experience pleased. "At home I got the idea for a similar evening, but then with pop music. I'm in the pop scene myself and played with the group Snowapple at many different venues, but the Bimhuis is really unique. The sound is great, the technicians are really good, and because of the theater setting - half of the room is seated - you listen in a complete different way than at, for example, Paradiso. It seemed to me fantastic to program pop in such a room." She quickly gave form to the idea. "It kept me up all night, that's how excited I was. The next day I called up Huub van Riel." Pop music seems like a far-removed genre from those normally seen at Bimhuis. Van Riel "was immediately enthusiastic, but he did have to think about it. And that's understandable. The Bimhuis is a jazz center. And pop is not jazz. On the other hand: the Bimhuis today programs a lot broader than before. Besides jazz and improvised music, you can also hear world music. And the last few years, Bimhuis has also participated in the Amsterdam Dance Event."