´Marko is a born narrator, he lets the art works speak'

- Wim Pijbes, General Director Rijksmuseum 2008-2016

´A master in his craft, with unashamed enthusiasm´

- Dominic Seldis, TV presenter,
Solo double bass player Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra

´Encyclopaedic knowledge, delightfully irreverent´

- David Allen, author


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On June 20th and 21st, Marko Kassenaar acted as special guest speaker at the GTD Summit in Theater Amsterdam.

During this international conference, Marko portrayed Amsterdam in six different speeches as a haven for creative minds and freethinkers. He put a special spotlight on five influential historic figures: Philosopher Baruch Spinoza, painter Rembrandt, feminist Aletta Jacobs, ´anti-smoking-magician´ Robert Jasper Grootveld and footballler Johan Cruijff.

Marko Kassenaar had been personally invited by David Allen, creator of the Getting Things Done methodology and central figure of this conference.




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On May 9th, 2019, Marko Kassenaar acted as guest speaker in the Rijksmuseum, focusing on the historic relationship between Europe and Korea. The speech took place during a pivate event for Samsung. Marko spoke about Hendrik Hamel, the ´Dutch discoverer´ of Korea, the VOC trading company and the role Dutch merchants played on the international stage, many of whom are depicted in Rembrandt´s ´Night Watch´.



photo: John Dijkgraaf

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New edition ´kingdom by the sea´ in stores now

`Kingdom By The Sea`, the highly successful book on Dutch architectural heritage by author Mark Zegeling, has undergone a make-over! The upcoming edition contains new photo´s, a new design and a porcelain cover. The monuments treated in this book have been put in a chronological order and offer the reader an excellent view of 1000 years of typical Dutch architecture. Biographies of famous architects and remarkable stories about the buildings´ inhabitants complete this edition. As of Ocotober 5th., the book is available in a limited edition.

Marko Kassenaar acted as a contributing editor on the chapters on the birth house of Dutch aviation pioneer Anthony Fokker and the Hermitage Museum in Amsterdam. For more information on Marko's activities as a writer and editor, please click here.

The buildings in this book served as an inspiration for the Blue Delft replica's, given out by KLM Royal Dutch Airlines as gin bottles. Every year, a new bottle is put on the market, with this year already reaching number 99.

Go to the website 'Kingdom by the Sea' for more information on the book.

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MUsicAL introductions at royal CONCERTGEBOUw amsterdam

Throughout the season 2018-2019, Marko Kassenaar presented musical introductions in the "On stage & Backstage" program,
a crash course in classical music, exclusively for secondary school students.
This program is a special co-operation between the Royal Concertgebouw and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra
and offers the pupils a behind-the-scenes look at this world-famous hall and orchestra.
Orchestra members tell about their life as a professional musician and top conductors are watched in rehearsal with the orchestra.

Click here for more infomation. On special occassions, these classes are also available in English. Please contact the Royal Concertgebouw for details.


In June 2016, Marko Kassenaar presented ´Rijks, Masters of the Golden Age´ by Marcel Wanders at the Dutch Embassy in Berlin.
For this book, he wrote the essay ´Creativity is Bliss´, on the symbolism of the Rijksmuseum architecture.



available programs






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"A new standard in tour guiding", was the opinion of Robert J. Hurst,
co-chairman of the Whitney Museum of American Art, after one of Marko's tours in the Rijksmuseum.

Highly exclusive tours can be organized for high-end customers.
Please contact us for more details and an offer.

Marko Kassenaar is an author, praised for his versatility. ´He handles the fountain pen and marker equally well, just as the ballpoint pen or the quill, completing each project wonderfully'.
(Mark Zegeling, ´Kingdom by the Sea´)

Marko wrote contributions for he latest edition of the highly successful ‘Kingdom by the Sea´, on the architectural history of The Netherlands, and
'Secrets of a Master Painter', the book accompanying the award-winning Dutch TV show on legendary painters. Both books were published in 2017.

For the spectacular book project
‘RIJKS, Masters of the Golden Age’, by designer Marcel Wanders, Marko Kassenaar wrote an article on the symbolism of the Rijksmuseum architecture. The book was published in 2016.

Marko Kassenaar gives musical introductions to students of secondary schools at the Royal Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. Workshops for adults are also available. These programs are in Dutch, but can also be booked in other languages through the
Royal Concertgebouw.

By far the most popular presentation is `Fabulous Facts and Amazing Anecdotes´, a unique mixture of a lecture and a quiz, in which participants share their factual knowledge and anecdotes, hosted by Marko.
Interactive and educational: ideal for training sessions or outings for companies and groups.

Furthermore, Marko Kassenaar gives successful speeches for the corporate sector, in which he accentuates the similarities between art history and the world of business.

Very popular also are his speeches in which a specific company’s history is shown in a tailor-made presentation.

His clients are, amongst others,
ABN-AMRO, the Rijksmuseum, Diligent, McKinsey, Salesforce, PB Projects, Intertrust and various cultural institutions.


ABOUT marko kassenaar

Marko Kassenaar is an author, speaker and musician. Combining these activities, he has a unique position in Amsterdam’s and The Netherlands’ art scene. He is the only specialist working for both the Royal Concertgebouw and the Rijksmuseum. In the latter, he regularly functions as a VIP host and speecher. Furthermore, he acts as an exclusive guide for high-end guests visiting The Netherlands.

Marko Kassenaar publishes on a wide variety of subjects in art and music history.
He co-operated on ‘RIJKS, Masters of the Golden Age’, the spectacular book project by designer Marcel Wanders, on the paintings of the Dutch Masters from the 17th century. He contributed to the latest edition of the highly successful ‘Kingdom by the Sea’, on five hundred years of Dutch architectural heritage, and ´Secrets of a Master Painter´, the book accompanying the awarded TV show on legendary painters.

Furthermore, Marko Kassenaar appears as an expert in various television programs. He took part in an acclaimed TV series on the Dutch Golden Age in 2012. He talked on religious art of the Renaissance in the nationwide televised Dutch National Bible Quiz in 2013. He also appeared in news items on the re-opening of the Rijksmuseum in 2013. In 2014 and 2015, interviews and short items were filmed for broadcasters from Japan, Russia, France and Sweden.

As a musician, Marko Kassenaar is mostly active as an arranger/composer. He adapted operas and musicals for the annual "Grachten Music Festival" in Amsterdam, the Nieuw Ensemble for contemporary music and various opera houses in Germany. Furthermore, he gives introductions to rehearsals of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and is co-developer of educational programs on specific subjects for the Royal Concertgebouw.