the importance of a private work place

I have always maintained my own work area to realize my electronic compositions. Initially, this would just be a corner of my bed room. Later I was able to reserve a dedicated space in my residence and set up something that could be called a ‘studio’.

The reason for having a private studio is that institutional studios are only available at certain hours of the day and often require an affiliation, which I didn’t have most of the time. Imagine a painter or sculptor who is forced to create at preset hours...

My own space also allowed me to work with equipment of my own design, which would have been impossible in an institutional studio.

current status (2020)

Entering the 21st century, the studio has graduallly been made suitable for computer animation production. The music is now generated through software. Any remaining hardware synthesizers (except for a rack-mounted Kurzweil) have been retired.

The year 2018 saw the establishment of a larger studio premises in Front Royal, VA; details to follow.

Job van Zuijlen working in his studio

brief history

before 1979

Experiments at Panweg, Zeist.In the early days I didn’t really have a studio; it was rather kind of a lab in my parents' attic, where I would build various kinds of devices to produce or transform sound. In 1971, though, I could purchase a professional-grade recorder; a Revox A77. I also built an electronic piano/organ from a kit, which I used in the score for the animated short Troost, my first published electronic composition (1976).

1979 - 1985

Studio at Oudenoord, Utrecht.In the summer of 1979, I moved to a large loft at Oudenoord in Utrecht and was able to set up my first proper studio. This was an analog tape studio with some equipment I had built myself and some prototype Synton equipment. The Oudenoord studio was a great creative environment where most of my purely analog pieces came into existence. I was a student during that period, which gave me plenty of time to devote to my music. Those were the days...

1985 - 1988

Studio at Klaverstraat, Utrecht.Unfortunately, I had to leave my large loft in 1985, but I was able to purchase a small townhouse (one floor and an attic above the storage space of a grocery store). I reserved a corner of the attic as studio. It was a tight setup, but workable. I acquired my first MIDI equipment: an Ensoniq ESQ-1 and a Mirage rack-mount. I also bought an Atari 1040, which had a MIDI interface built in. As sequencer software I used eMagic Notator, Logic’s predecessor. All this resulted in a move away from the analog electronic music I had created before.

1988 - 1993

Studio at Wagenstraat, Utrecht.In the fall of 1988 I bought a much larger house and could improve the studio facility. As far as I can remember, I added a TEAC X-1000M two-track recorder and a rack-mounted mixer to the equipment. Although I had a better studio, I have the feeling that my professional career, which was not in music, stood in the way of my compositional activities...

1993 - early 2000s

Studio in Arlington, VA.In 1993 I moved to the United States and had to leave some of my equipment behind, including several tape recorders. I did keep my Mirage, my ESQ-1, and my Synton 3000, but added several digital sound modules. I also started to use more and more software synthesis.

21st century

studio electona in 2017Currently all sound generation is through software, while the studio's emphasis is on creating 3D animation, with the "sound section" playing a supportive role.

External links were up-to-date as per per January 26, 2023, but are subject to change beyond my control. Non-secure links have been removed.