Bram Van Camp

Bram Van Camp

Bram Van Camp (Antwerp °1980) graduated from the Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp (2003) where he studied the violin, chamber music, composition, music analysis, counterpoint and fugue. He studied composition under Wim Henderickx (1998-2005) and Theo Loevendie (2003-2005) at the Conservatory of Amsterdam. His works contain solo and chamber music, ensemble works, orchestral music (including a symphony called Tetrahedron ), a Violin Concerto and Piano Concerto and 2 song cycles (The Feasts of Fear and Agony for soprano and ensemble and Träume for mezzo-soprano and orchestra).

He has received many prizes for his work as a composer: in 1999 he won the Aquarius Composition Competition with Rhapsody for violin and orchestra. In 2002 he won the BAP prize (Belgian Artistic Promotion) awarded by SABAM, for his Trio for clarinet, viola and piano (2000). His String Quartet (2004) and his The Feasts of Fear and Agony (2012) were selected for the ISCM Catalogue (International Society for Contemporary Music). In 2007 he won the Jeugd en Muziek Prijs voor Compositie (Youth & Music Award for Composition) and in 2014 his String Quartet (2004) won the second prize at the International Composition Contest ‘New Note’ in Croatia. Music for 3 instruments was selected for the ISCM World Music Days 2018 in Beijing. In 2020 he was awarded with the KLARA (Classical Radio Award) 'Composer of the Year 2019' and the Sabam for Culture Award Composer of the Year 2019.

His compositions were commissioned by a.o. the Queen Elisabeth Competition (compulsory work Semi-Final for Violin 2019), the 'Festival of Flanders', the TRANSIT New Music Festival, 'deSingel' (Antwerp) and the Ars Musica Festival. His works are performed by (among others) the Arditti Quartet, Hermes Ensemble, I Solisti, Antwerp Symphony Orchestra, the Flanders Symphony Orchestra, Het Collectief, Oxalys, Blindman Collective, Wibert Aerts, Piet Van Bockstal and Jan Michiels. Furthermore, his works are performed in various Belgian concert houses, including deSingel an Amuz (Antwerp), de Bijloke (Ghent) BOZAR (Brussels) and the Concertgebouw Brugge. His work was also programmed in London and at the Amsterdam Concertgebouw, France, Croatia, Denmark, Slovakia and China.

His portret cd (including The Feasts of Fear and Agony, Music for 3 instruments and Improvisations ) recorded by Het Collectief in 2013 (Fuga Libera) was higly praised at home and abroad, including 5 stars in Diapason (Fr) and The Gramophone (GB).

In creating his music Bram Van Camp always strives for a style with an intuitive starting point in which each note can still be explained within its own consistent system. He always keeps a musical and organic sounding result in mind. In this way, his composition system does not constitute a goal in itself, but is used as a means to a natural sounding essence: the actual organic music. To him composing is a quest in which he always tries to renew his style compared to his previous compositions. On the philosophical level a clear similarity with György Ligeti can be detected. His stylistic roots originate from Béla Bartók, Igor Stravinsky and Alban Berg.

Because of his penchant for natural, organic musical freedom, his music is often influenced by jazz music.

Bram Van Camp is teaches Composition and Harmony and Counterpoint (Main Courses) at the Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp. He is also the initiator of The Times, a forum for young composers organized by the Hermes Ensemble, where he acts as coach each year.