Interview with Maria Martin, in the Frank Martin House
The Frank Martin House
Frank Martin (b. Geneva 1890) lived at Bollelaan 11, Naarden (The Netherlands) from 1 March 1956 until his death on 21 November 1974. It was here that he created a great number of his compositions, such as Le Mystère de la Nativité (1957-59), Monsieur de Pourceaugnac (1961-1962), Pilate (1964), the Concerto for Cello (1965), the Concerto II for Piano (1968-1969), the Requiem (1971-72), the Polyptyque (1973) and Et la Vie l'emporta (1974).
Maria Martin, the composer's widow, has seen to it that the ground floor of the house has not been changed since Frank Martin's death in 1974. He worked on the cantata Et la Vie l'emporta until ten days before his death. The house contains archives and is a documentation centre aimed at students, musicologists and musicians who want to know more about the composer.
Frank Martin loved the house in its idyllic setting surrounded by a big garden full of birds and (red) squirrels. One summer's day he stayed home to compose in total concentration and told his wife on her return, quasi disappointed: "I have not had one quiet moment! The tits chirped so loudly in the room and a squirrel even made it all the way to my desk".
The contents of the Frank Martin House:
- His library.
- His discography.
- A large correspondence.
- (Annotated) scores that the composer used to conduct his works.
- A collection of programmes.
- Publications by Frank Martin.
- Publications on Frank Martin.
- The text editions that the composer used for his vocal works, as well as texts he compiled himself.
- Many tapes of his works, including many recordings of first performances.
- A vast collection of colour photographs and slides made by the composer, many dating from before World War I.
- His study with desk, writing tools and grand piano.
- Theses, essays, dissertations etc. on the composer.
- Almost all documents and objects of the Frank Martin exhibition in 1984.
Please note: The manuscripts (music and text) are kept at the Paul Sacher Stiftung in Basel. Most of Frank Martin's compositions are published by Universal Edition in Vienna.
Visits to the house
How to make an appointment
It is possible to visit the Frank Martin House with Mrs. Maria Martin. Call for an appointment: +31-(0)35-6942781.
How to find the Frank Martin House
The little town of Naarden is situated between Amsterdam and Amersfoort. On the A1, take exit 7 (Bussum; Naarden; Naarden-Vesting). Turn right at the end of the exit and turn right again at the first traffic lights. After the viaduct this road is called Bollelaan. Number 11 is situated at the corner of the third road on the right (Van Rossumlaan).
The Frank Martin House
Bollelaan 11, NL-1411 JV Naarden, Netherlands
tel/fax: +31 (0) 35 694 2004
Supported by the "République et Canton de Genève"