This month harpist Remy van Kesteren will play his Musica Callada programme in Chicago and Birmingham. Together with trumpeter Eric Vloeimans, Remy van Kesteren explores the music of Federico Mompou and the music from his recently released CD. Classical, jazz and improvisation in a continuous program full of surprises, including a special commission by Dutch composer Oene van Geel.
July 10 [ 7:00 pm ]
Chicago (USA): Lyon & Healy Hall
July 11 [ 8:00 pm ]
Chicago (USA): Lyon & Healy Hall
July 13 [ 7:30 pm ]
Birmingham (USA): Episcopal Church of the Ascension
About Remy van Kesteren
When one thinks of a harpist, presumably images of delicately strumming nymphs with long blonde hair come to mind. But now there is Remy van Kesteren. He has just won the US International Harp Competition, the largest harp competition in the world, has reached 500,000 visitors during the Night of the Proms and has taken on numerous ambitious projects, including a collaboration with the famous ballet choreographer, Hans van Manen, in 2014. At the age of five, Remy was lured off the swing by a mysterious sound from an open window – the sound of the harp. Aged ten, he entered the Conservatory of Utrecht and before he had finished his studies with the highest distinction, he could already look back on two successful editions of his own Dutch Harp Festival. Remy attributes his rapidly developing career to his former teacher, Erika Waardenburg, the purveyor of the Dutch harp scene. He does not feel bound to ‘prevailing ideas’ about the harp.
Remy van Kesteren (1989) is regarded a world-class harp talent and one of the most adventurous harpists of the moment. At the age of ten, he was admitted to the Conservatory of Utrecht in the class of Erika Waardenburg where he graduated with the highest distinction in 2010. He further pursued his studies at the Conservatoire Natoinal Supérieur de Musique de Paris, where he worked with the famous harpist Isabelle Moretti. Last year Remy received his master diploma ‘summa cum laude’ at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. At age twenty, Remy founded the Dutch Harp Festival, of which three successful editions have taken place in Utrecht, in 2010, 2012 and 2014. The Festival will be held for the fourth time in 2016.
Remy van Kesteren is only 26, but has already won numerous prizes. In July 2013, he won the US International Harp Competition, one of the largest and most prestigious harp competitions in the world. Recently he also received the Elisabeth Everts Prize (2012) and the Grachtenfestival Prize (2013), both prizes for exceptional young talent in the Netherlands. He has won first prizes at the Dutch Harp Competition and the Princess Christina Competition, as well as prizes in International Harp Competitions in Moscow (2008) and Israel (2009). He was also proclaimed Dutch Music Talent of 2009. In 2012, Remy toured the Netherlands as a laureate of Dutch Classical Talent, a stimulation project USA International Harp Competition Winner 2013 of the Royal Concertgebouw and Radio 4.
His many prizes have resulted in worldwide concerts, from Europe to the US, South- America and Africa. He made his debut in the Concertgebouw of Amsterdam with the Dutch Chamber Orchestra at the early age of sixteen. The year before, Remy had played at the baptism of Princess Amalia and a concert at Carnegie Hall (New York). In 2011, he was Young Artist in Residence at the NJO Muziekzomer in Gelderland and in 2012, Remy toured the Netherlands, Belgium, Luxembourg and Germany in the famous ‘Night of the Proms’ concert tour. As its only classical artist, he performed alongside celebrated pop artists such as Anastacia and legendary group The Jacksons. 500,000 visitors were captivated by his performance of Smetana’s The Moldau. According to the Proms organization, Remy has “the courage, the looks and the craftsmanship to raise attention for a unique instrument, that was never before seen in the spotlights of the Proms”. Remy was “the most beautiful surprise of the evening”, according to Belgian newspaper De Morgen (The Morning).
In 2012, Remy released his first solo-CD, ‘Remy’, with works by Smetana, Holliger, Bach, Shostakovich and Renié. He developed himself as “an amazing colourist” and “a marvellous storyteller”, who “continually forces you to listen very carefully”, according to the Dutch press. In 2014, his second CD ‘Memento’ was released. For this disc, Remy chose music from Spain and Brazil and invited composer Martin Fondse to write new works that merged with the expressivity of these compositions.
For the 2015/2016 season, Remy has been invited to the Rising Stars programme of the European Concert Hall Organisation to undertake a European tour. Especially for this programme, Remy arranged Federico Mompou’s Musica Callada for himself and trumpeter Eric Vloeimans. With Mompou’s music as the leitmotif, they explore classical music, jazz and improvisation in an ongoing programme full of surprises. A variation of this programme will also be performed this season in halls throughout the Netherlands.
About Eric Vloeimans
Eric Vloeimans has been active in a wide variety of ensembles all over the years. He has toured the US twice with his acoustic ‘chamber/jazz’ ‘Fugimundi’ trio, featuring the surprising Anton Goudsmit on guitar and rising star Harmen Fraanje on piano. Their broad repertoire ranges from contemporary jazz, hymns, world music to occasional standards, all of which is presented with warmth and wit. His other band is Eric Vloeimans’ Gatecrash, which features soundscape master Jeroen van Vliet on Fender Rhodes and keyboards, the inventive Gulli Gudmundsson on bass, electric basses and effects, and the up and coming Jasper van Hulten on drums. Vloeimans expands his trumpet mastery with electronics special effects. Gatecrash has earned a reputation as one of Europe’s top cross-over bands between jazz and pop. The music ranges from lazy lounge music to hard core uptempo beats and spaced out moods, with Zappa-influenced odd meters. It’s a band that sweeps the audience away. Gatecrash has toured throughout Europe, Asia and the USA.
Vloeimans’ performances and recordings with a multitude of other formations has shown his versatility. His musical talent, easy-going attitude and great sense of humour have brought him to play with national and international artists such as Mercer Ellington, John Taylor, Peter Erskine, The Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Jasper van ‘t Hof, Wayne Horvitz, Charlie Mariano, Nguyên Lê, Jimmy Haslip, Philippe Catherine, Joey Baron, the Holland Baroque Society, Lars Danielsson, Michael Moore, Tuur Florizoone, the Matangi Quartet, Bojan Z., Eric Vaarzon Morel, Martin Fondse, soundartist Michel Banabila, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and many, many others.
His most recent cd is with German pianist Florian Weber, an astonishing performance “Live at the Concertgebouw” recorded in April 2011. That year saw Eric do seven concerts in that venerable institution – four concerts in the recital hall and three in the large hall, all of which were on a carte blanche basis. He performed with the Metropole Orchestra, the Marinierskapel (the Navy Band), the Paradiso Ochestra – his other forays into the classical world include a world premiere of a new trumpet concerto “Evensong” (written by Eric and Martin Fondse) which he performed with the Limburg Symphony Orchestra on October 26th and 30th 2011.
Eric has also ventured into film music, writing (with Fons Merkies) and performing the music for the feature film “Majesteit” (premiered in September 2010), as well as for the animation film “Audition” (with Martin Fondse).
His musical collaborations have taken Eric Vloeimans abroad many times. With diverse artists and ensembles he played all over Europe, Indonesia, China, the Middle East, South Africa and Japan. Experiences from his travels influence his music constantly and can be heard in many of his compositions.
Recently he was asked to perform a solo trumpet intermezzo at the reknowned “TED-x” conference in Amsterdam that left the audience quite speechless.
He has been honored because of his many works, in all possible genres that cover the range from classical to pop, film music, world and jazz. In between playing all over the world, being on tour and picking up Edison Awards, he shares his talent with the students of the Codarts College for the Arts in Rotterdam, and the Royal Conservatory in the Hague.
Eric Vloeimans plays from the heart and has shown a remarkable power to create bridges and reach the hearts of audiences all over the world.