NBC’s “The Voice” has become a huge hit in the United States, but the phenomenon actually started in Holland, where the show first began airing on Dutch TV in 2010.
The competition show’s bandleader, keyboardist Jeroen Rietbergen, resigned Saturday, January 15, 2022, according to a statement put out by BNNVARA, a Dutch public broadcasting network, and BOOS, a Dutch investigative program that conducted “a long-term investigation” into allegations of “sexually transgressive behavior” among the show’s cast.
The broadcaster of “The Voice of Holland,” RTL, issued a statement about the allegations when it announced the show would be suspended.
“The allegations are very serious and shocking and were not known to RTL,” the statement reads, per The Hollywood Reporter. “Based on these allegations, [‘The Voice’] Producer ITV has been contacted and a mutual agreement has been reached that ITV will immediately initiate a diligent, independent investigation.”
The statement concludes, “The broadcasts of ‘The Voice of Holland’ will be suspended for the time being until more is clear.”
The show’s season 12 premiered on January 7, 2022, so the season was just getting started.
Heavy has reached out to “The Voice of Holland” for comment.
The Incidents Occurred ‘Years Ago’
According to the announcement by BNNVARA, BOOS “editors received a confession and apology from the band leader of The Voice, Jeroen Rietbergen.” Rietbergen “admitted to ‘relationships of a sexual nature'” and to exchanging “sexually explicit messages” with women on the show in a statement to ANP, a Dutch news service, according to The Hollywood Reporter.
The bandleader apologized “to the women involved for things I should never have done” and added, according to the outlet, that he “did not believe he was abusing his position of power on the production.”
According to Billboard, Rietbergen said the incidents took place “many years ago” and he has sought out professional help in the time since. Ali B, who was a coach on the show, has also been accused of “sexually transgressive behavior,” The Hollywood Reporter wrote.
On Instagram, Ali B stated that he is innocent. “I am 100 percent convinced of my innocence. … It’s not true and I’m confident the research will prove it,” he wrote. “But the damage has been done.”
The Investigation Began in Spring 2021
According to the statement by BNNVARA and BOOS, in the show’s place on Thursday there will be a broadcast “about sexually transgressive behavior on ‘The Voice of Holland.'”
The investigation started in the spring of 2021, according to the statement, after the show’s editors “received stories about alleged sexually transgressive behavior within ‘The Voice of Holland.'”
“This does not only concern charges against Jeroen Rietbergen, but charges against several people within the program,” the statement reads.
1 Coach Has Quit the Show
Amid the allegations, one of the coaches has quit the show completely.
Anouk Teeuwe, a 46-year-old singer and coach on “The Voice of Holland,” has quit the show, according to ESCXTRA. Anouk had been a coach on the show since 2015.
According to the outlet, Anouk stated in an Instagram video, “The news is so saddening and a major disappointment. I know enough. I’ve decided I don’t want to return to ‘The Voice.’ It’s a corrupt mess. I don’t want to work at a place where men have, for years, abused their positions and where others have chosen to keep the misconduct silent and look the other way.”
“You just can’t do that,” she added, “You’ve got structural issues when you do that. I do not wish to be part of such behaviour, that’s just not for me. So therefore, I will not return to ‘The Voice of Holland.'”