A new violin concerto, dedicated to Merel, has been written by composer Mathilde Wantenaar over the last year. The concerto had its successful premiere on the 20th of May in Alkmaar with the Alkmaars Symfonie Orkest. Special about this work is that it has been written especially for violin and amateur orchestra, unique in music history! Dutch newspapers De Volkskrant, NRC Handelsblad, and Alkmaarse Courant all wrote about it. Want to know more? A video of the premiere will be posted soon.
The composition has been funded by the VSBfonds, Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds and Hofstee stichting.
Dutch Newspaper De Volkskrant wrote about the initiative in a big interview with Merel and the composer:
“Merel Vercammen (28) speelt betoverend viool, improviseert in klassiek en jazz, heeft een master op zak in ‘music cognition’ en stroomt over van ideeën. Met haar voorstelling over muziek en het brein, Het Nieuwe Mozart Effect, koppelt ze intelligentie aan muziek. En nu heeft ze een gat in het vioolrepertoire ontdekt. Zaterdag gaat in Alkmaar een compositie in première die ze speciaal liet schrijven voor amateurorkest en een professionele vioolsolist. Die combinatie was er nog niet.”
NRC Handelsblad also wrote about the new violin concerto, and Merel performed live on Radio4 (Opium) to promote the concert. Listen back here.
Additionally, an interview with Merel and Mathilde appeared in Alkmaarse Courant:
Merel will be taking her improvisation skills to the theatres this autumn! She will perform as the improvisation sidekick of the famous Dutch singer/performer/comedian Herman van Veen. The touring schedule will include 35 times the famous Carré theatre in Amsterdam. Check Merel’s calendar for dates!
Merel was invited by the Dutch Embassy to give concerts in Indonesia in January 2017. Together with cellist Joachim Eijlander and writer/presenter Merlijn Kerkhof she performed the newly developed lecture recital “All begins with Bach” at venues in Jakarta, Surabaya (Java) and Lampung (Sumatra). The Indonesian audience was very appreciative!
With the director of the Erasmus Huis Jakarta Dhr. Michael Rauner (on the left)
Merel has won the Second Prize in the London Grand Prize Virtuoso Competition together with pianist Jenna Sung. They will perform Debussy Sonata at the Prize Winners Concert at the Elgar Room of the Royal Albert Hall on the 29th of March.
Violinist Merel Vercammen graduated with highest distinction from the Royal College of Music in London and was a prize winner of the London Grand Prize Virtuoso Competition and the Dutch National Competition for Young Music Talent. Merel also completed a Master of Science in Music, Mind and Brain and is currently living in The Netherlands.