Conductor and composer Arjan van Baest (1969) likes to embrace new challenges with musicians who share his passion for music. His compositions and the varied repertoires of his choirs reflect his broad musical interest. Arjan is the music director/conductor of the Dominicuskerk in Amsterdam. Currently, he is the artistic leader/conductor of Stichting Bachcantates Tilburg, Appassionata Consort & Koor and Cantiqua Concert (concert choir). With these and other ensembles Arjan has performed a wide range of works for choir and orchestra, including Mozart’s ‘Magic Flute’, Handel’s ‘Messiah’, Mozart’s ‘Requiem’ and all major Bach works. [selection of works conducted]
Compositions by Arjan include ‘Factus est recente’ for organ, saxophone quartet, double bass and percussion (first prize in the Eindhoven Festival Of New Organ Music 2010), ‘For God To God’ for soprano and choir on texts by Etty Hillesum (premiered under the composer’s direction in Muziekgebouw aan ‘t IJ, Amsterdam, 2013) and the stage works ‘Een wintervertelling’, ‘Mingo’ and ‘Lodewijk Napeoleon in Brabant’. Arjan has recorded some of his choral works on the cd ‘Pro Luce’ (issued in 2013 by Stichting Muziek Nu). In 2017, the cd ‘Lezen in bed’ was issued, with eight cabaret songs (in Dutch). In 2018, a cd with liturgical compositions on texts by Franck Ploum was released. As a pianist/organist Arjan works with Dorine van der Klei, Theaterchor Niederrhein and composer/conductor Tom Löwenthal.
Arjan is a research coach at the Fontys Conservatory in Tilburg. With composer Evert van Merode he founded Stichting Muziek Nu, a platform for the development and performance of new music. Arjan studied church organ and music theory with Henk de Croon. At the Fontys Conservatory he studied composition with Kees Schoonenbeek, choral conducting with Louis Buskens (graduated cum laude) and orchestral conducting with Arjan Tien. He holds a PhD. in Literature from Tilburg University.
Arjan is chair of the board of the Hanns Eisler Stichting Nederland.