Grown up in a family of musicians, he showed a great interest for music during his childhood and took his first musical steps on the violin at the age of three. A few years later, he switched from violin to cello and started his musical studies at the Music Conservatory of Bruges. In the same year he started playing Recorder and Percussion.
Martijn’s first conducting experience took place at the age of 11 conducting a small string orchestra in Lauwe, Belgium. He then started studying with Kristof Van Grysperre, his first mentor and teacher in piano and conducting. In 2010, Martijn went on a 4-week masterclass as Apprentice Conductor in Los Angeles, conducting two performances with the Intimate Opera Orchestra. At the age of 14, Martijn has exceptionally been admitted to the Royal Conservatory of Brussels, where he completed a Bachelor Program in Music Theory and Harmony with honors as well as beginning his Conducting studies under the guidance of Patrick Davin. In the same years, in Bruges, healso graduated with honors in Cello, Percussion and Chamber Music.
As part of his Conducting studies, Martijn has been selected to participate in the Euroclassical Project, conducting Strauss’ Tod und Verklärung with the Brussels Conservatory Symphony Orchestra. In 2014, Martijn conducted the highly acclaimed premiere of “La Forêt”, a chamber opera by Baudouin de Jaer, which lead to his debut at the Palais des Beaux-Arts (BOZAR) in Brussels conducting the world premiere of “Cities – Springs of Diversities” by the same composer. Martijn was the music director of the “Festival for Minimal Music Weimar”, which he organized on the occasion of the 80th birthday of the American composer Steve Reich.
From 2016 to 2020 he was serving as Principal Guest conductor of the Academic Orchestra Halle. He has also made guest appearances with the Flanders Symphony Orchestra, the Belgian National Orchestra, the Jena Philharmonic, the Thuringia Philharmonic Gotha-Eisenach, the Staatskapelle Weimar, the Luzern Festival Strings and the Brussels Sinfonietta. He has also conducted the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, London Symphony Orchestra, Zurich Tonhalle Orchester, WDR Orchester Cologne, Gurzenich Orchester Cologne, Antwerp Symphony Orchestra, Filharmonie Hradec Králové, Dortmund Philharmonic and the Bremen Philharmonic. In December 2019 he made his conducting debut at the Concertgebouw Amsterdam with the Flanders Symphony Orchestra and the pianist Severin von Eckardstein.
Bernard Haitink invited Martijn three times to take part in his master class at the Lucerne Festival. He also received important impulses from Christian Thielemann, Michael Sanderling, Edo de Waart, Simone Young and Iván Fischer amongst others.
Belgian National Orchestra & Guests - 50th Anniversary Concert CC Hasselt
CC Hasselt bestaat 50 jaar! Ter ere van deze speciale gebeurtenis speelt het Belgian National Orchestra een door de jazz geïnspireerd programma met maar liefst drie Belgische solisten die elk een zelden uitgevoerd concerto uitvoeren.