Bad Dutch joke as Concertgebouw releases upskirting promo

Bad Dutch joke as Concertgebouw releases upskirting promo


norman lebrecht

August 31, 2017

In one of the most insensitive videos ever to be released by a music organisation, the Concertgebouw is promoting its new season with a shameless upskirt video.


In the US or the UK, the personal responsible for this would be fired before the day is out.

UPDATE: Concertgebouw takes down upskirting video.


  • Rgiarola says:

    That’s the reason we like Netherlands! Top-notch orchestra, concert hall and enviroment

  • Mark Henriksen says:

    Whats wrong with it?

  • Bert Shoeman says:

    Later that day: “Butt me no Butts: Transgender buttocks revealed in cruel attempted censorship clencher” … maybe a cover-up is in the offing?

  • Great job! They really put some thought and effort when making this ad. People will like it, share it and talk about it.

  • boringfileclerk says:

    I don’t understand the outrage. It’s all in good fun.

  • Zelda Macnamara says:

    Stupid, vulgar, and not about the music.

  • Shame on them. It’s stupid, sexist crap.

  • Bum Note says:

    It would have been even better had she let rip a real top B flat fart!

  • Suicidal Aardvark says:

    Marketing means getting something to market. The more resistant the market to something you feel they simply ought to have if only they knew!, the more aggressive, imaginative, shareable, and thus conversation-generating the marketing required. In this case, the market is young people who know nothing about classical music but perceive it as unsexy and humorless. Plenty of evidence for both accusations on this blog! The perception alterer, a leaf blower and an almost bare ass, is not intended to “talk about the music”. It is intended to get bums on seats! The perception alterer exists because, alas, great music alone does not sell itself in a world which no longer listens or hears for more that 8 seconds at a time, but does still love a fine bottom and some silly prep-school humor! I look forward to seeing what they do with Pachelbel’s Canon!

  • Sixtus says:

    Sooooo glad that the piece wasn’t Hair on the G string.

  • Britcellist says:

    Ok, it’s a bit of fun, but to pair the two mediums denigrates the most beautiful of arias. I certainly don’t think of blowers and bums when hearing the piece. It’s so serene and calming, perfect for listening while driving in the evening rush hour. Instantly lowers blood pressure.

  • Ungeheuer says:

    Willem Mengelberg rolls in his grave. Fortunately, Bernard Haitink is still among us and he should speak out about this offense/travesty.

  • Nick says:

    I don’t think it is being precious or dull to find this offensive.

    I would be very interested to know at which audience this particular piece of advertising was aimed, how it got approval, and how nobody in that approval process could see that it could cause offence?

    “Carry on up the Concertgebouw” is not appealing to me in the slightest.

  • David says:

    Because marketing classical music to sex perverts hasn’t been tried before

  • John Borstlap says:

    The problem with this sort of ‘marketing’ is that the targetted audience – in this case, juvenile ignorati – will be thoroughly disappointed when they finally go to a concert, and they won’t be attending one for the rest of their illiterate life.

  • Robert Holmén says:

    Does the “air” and “G string” joke even work in Dutch?

    • John Borstlap says:

      No, because the people it is supposed to lure into the hall would need translation and then, the fun has disappeared.

  • John Porter says:

    I think its great. The classical folks should lighten up. I hear the next video will have a dead parrot.

  • Frederick West says:

    I see many cribs from the Hamlet cigar ads of old here. They did have a bit more subtlety though.
    Perhaps it’s a bit obscure to get what the point is here, it’s interesting in an entertaining marketing kind of way. Short and to the point.

  • Yuval says:

    “In the US or the UK, the personal responsible for this would be fired before the day is out.”

    You post that at the end of the blog entry, as if to say that the US or the UK are the standard for all behaviour, advertising, morals, etc. Sorry to tell you that they aren’t anymore and they are both sinking fast.

    I personally find the US, in particular, probably the most old fashioned, outdated place for advertising and general communication. Sure, there are exceptions, but when I look at their orchestras and ensembles and am able to stand ten minutes of their television commercials, or look at the outdated packaging on food products in the supermarket, I quickly get the feeling that I am back in the 1960’s, at a time where fantasy, sexual humour and cutting edge graphics were non-existent. The UK is far better and a more open, free and liberal society, but it is still not a reference by any means. Let the Dutch be Dutch, in that they like the obvious, the in your face, very direct and blunt, and often unsophisticated way of saying something. It may not be to everybody’s taste, but at least it pushes the boundaries, something the ever so conservative and ridiculously politically correct Americans are both incapable of and too frighten to even dare doing. I’ll take the Netherlands any day over the others.

    • John Borstlap says:

      Are you sure? Most (not all of them, I insist) have no manners and no culture, think that being rude is being honest, they cultivate smallness in ALL things, they are terribly conformist under the veneer of progressiveness, they don’t understand ego boundaries, they change the educational system every 2 years because that’s fun, their universities celebrate populist marxism and deconstructivism, they cannot queue – either for theatres, trams or busses, they value everything in life according to money value (they would sell their own mother if anybody would want her), they try to cut down to size anything that reminds them of their inferiority, they are corrupt, they cannot act in movies or theatre plays, they think stories with lots of distasteful sex and drunken nihilism = great literature, they love pop music and, in the rare instances that this is not available, concept art and concept music, and there are a couple of other things I won’t recite because it’s getting offensive. But their water management is good and their multiculti society does indeed work, in spite of the rumors of dangerous shoarma hubs, and they are very tolerant for classical musicians: they are neither locked-up nor forced into camp labour.

  • Sue says:

    Sign of the times. No hips, no butts.

  • Rgiarola says:

    Yes, it is sign of the times. It is already blocked. Probably only in Netherlands and in Brazil it is still available ohohohhoohoh

    • John Borstlap says:

      My fly on the wall informed me half an hour ago that all male members of the Piraha tribe (Amazone territory) are sitting in a circle around their screen and repeatedly play the video to general acclaim.

      • Rgiarola says:


        Do you really thing they will understand the joke concerning “Air on the G-string”? At least as a Bach composition?

        I think youre are overestimating Piraha…..

  • William Safford says:

    “This video is private.”

    Has it been cross-posted anywhere?