Belgian guitarist Bart Venken’s international carrier kicked off when he started combining his passion for music and his virtuosity with the joy of playing together with likeminded people, as the national newspaper De Standaard writes: “His concerts sound joyful, well balanced and brighten your day, but are at the same time virtuosic and impressive to look at”.
In the fall of 2017 Bart began working on his first solo classical album, recording pieces that were crucial for his musical and emotional development and will always have a special place in his heart. Simultaneously he is playing a program involving oriental inspired music for classical guitar, in collaboration with To Be, an experimental platform for the new generation of artists in Antwerp. As a member of the internationally acclaimed Four Aces Guitar Quartet - who have extensively toured Europe and Asia and are a favourite on the national radio station Klara - he is researching piano music from various epoques and translating this to the subtleties, magic and wide array of colours the classical guitar has to offer. The result of this will be published in collaboration with Belgium’s finest classical label and recording studio EPR Classic. This fourth album of Belgium’s most famous guitar ensemble will be the main focus of their upcoming concert series in Europe and China.
In previous seasons, Bart recorded several albums going from baroque to contemporary music. He played live shows on national and international radio and television stations and his music is regularly featured on Radio Klara. He has premiered and recorded dozens of pieces written for and dedicated to him, being very honoured to be able to actively expand the repertoire for classical guitar. He has won awards in various chamber music and art competitions in Europe and received invitations to play concerts and give masterclasses all over the continent. He has also worked together with multiple arts and music organisations in China, where he is re-invited for a third concert series in 2018 after selling out two successful tours in 2013 and 2016. Bart is proud to be sponsored by Savarez Strings and to be an official Savarez Artist for several years already. This partnership allows him to keep on exploring and developing the brilliance and and punch in his tone for which he is well known. When he is not preparing concerts or working on stage, Bart loves to carry his passion for music on to the next generation of guitarists by giving masterclasses and private lessons.
“If the members of the Four Aces Guitar Quartet were each labelled like a deck of cards, Bart would be the Ace of Hearts; seemingly effortlessly breathing vibrant life into any piece he touches.” (Adam Vincent Clarke - Composer)