Archives: Artists

Aslan Chikovani

Aslan Chikovani

Aslan Chikovani was born in 1996, Tbilisi, Georgia Laureate of third and the winner of the fourth Tbilisi International Young Pianists Competition Winner of the International Young Pianists Competition in Frankfurt (Germany) “Golden Note” Laureate of the XVIII International Competition of Young Pianists named after Frederic Chopin in Szafarnia (Poland). Winner of the Grand Prix …

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Carter Muller

Carter Muller is a Dutch-American classical pianist and aspiring conductor. He was born in Amsterdam in May 2001. Carter has performed on various podia throughout Europe and Northern America, including major halls such as the Royal Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. He has performed as a soloist with the Sinfonia Rotterdam and Residentie Orchestra. His repertoire stretches …

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Víctor Naranjo

Víctor Naranjo

He was born in Las Palmas de Gran Canaria (Canary Islands, Spain) in 1996. He began studying piano at the age of 7 with his mother. He continued his studies at the Conservatory of Music of Gran Canaria with Emilio Tabraue. He also took lessons with Galina Neporozohnya. He finished his Bachelor’s degree with Alexander …

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Zhora Sargsyan

Zhora Sargsyan

“This pianist can electrify even the empty halls” wrote the Tagesspiegel magazine after the broadcast of Debut concert of Zhora Sargsyan for the Deutschlandfunk Kultur during the pandemic in 2021. Zhora Sargsyan gained international attention after winning the 3rd grand prix at the prestigious International piano competition Long – Thibaud in Paris in 2019. Many …

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Pablo Suaste

Pablo Suaste

Described by the Fanfare Magazine in 2018 as a genuine poet at the keyboard, Pablo Suaste’s elegant and virtuosic artistry has led him to be recognized as a rising artist in the music world. In January 2017, Mr. Suaste won the Aeolian Classics Emerging Artist Award at the Chicago College of Performing Arts; as a …

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Ruben Plazier

Pianist Ruben Plazier obtained his Diplôme Supérieur d’èxécution unanimously in 2021 at the Ecole Normale de Musique Alfred Cortot in Paris, where he was accompanied by Jean-Bernard Pommier. Ruben started playing the piano at the age of 6 because his parents had a piano at home. After much experimentation behind the piano, he received his …

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Alexander Gavrylyuk

Alexander Gavrylyuk

Ukrainian pianist Alexander Gavrylyuk closes NIPF 2022 with piano masterpieces by Debussy, Liszt, Beethoven and Rachmaninov. The program includes Beethoven’s most beloved work for piano: the Mondscheinsonata. In addition, the breathtaking, early-impressionist Deux Arabesques by Debussy can be heard. Gavrylyuk concludes this matinee with the Second Piano Sonata by the Russian grand master of piano …

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Nino Gvetadze

Nino Gvetadze

Nino Gvetadze was born in Tbilisi, Georgia. Gvetadze has achieved success in competitions, taking second prize, the press prize and the audience award at the International Franz Liszt Piano in 2008 and the Borletti-Buitoni Trust Award in 2010. She has appeared with the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, the Munich Sinfonia, Kammerakademie Potsdam and numerous other orchestras …

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Alfred Brendel

Alfred Brendel, born in Vizmberk in Moravië on 5 January 1931, studied piano and composition in Zagreb and Graz, completing his piano studies with Edwin Fischer, Paul Baumgartner and Eduard Steuermann. For 60 years he has enjoyed a distinguished international career concentrating on the works of central European composers from Bach to Schoenberg as well …

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Kristian Bezuidenhout

Kristian Bezuidenhout

Kristian Bezuidenhout is one of today’s most notable and exciting keyboard artists, equally at home on the fortepiano, harpsichord, and modern piano. Born in South Africa in 1979, he began his studies in Australia, completed them at the Eastman School of Music, and now lives in London. After initial training as a pianist with Rebecca …

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As a little girl I walked with my mother in Naarden Vesting, on the way to the Turfpoortstraat, on the way to my grandmother. the buildings! The Spanish House, St Andrew’s Church! The former church building which was built by the Robert F.W. Bruinsma was converted into a concert hall. How did that happen?

In my youth I listened to the St Matthew Passion many times in the Grote Kerk in Naarden. My parents were both organizationally involved in these beautiful performances by the Netherlands Bach Society. At that time, the seeds were sown for my development in and love for music. After my childhood and schooling, my husband and I have done a lot of work abroad and have lived in France for 25 years. The music then came into the background a bit, but it never really left my head. My husband passed away in 2005.

During that period I started organizing piano concerts on our estate in France. It was a success! And it gave me the energy and the idea to take up that also in the Netherlands after I sold the estate. To ensure that everything runs smoothly, the Robert F.W. Bruinsma set up. The main objective of our foundation is to support young musicians, especially piano students, on their way to their future.

The Andreaskerk in the Turfpoortstraat in Naarden Vesting has been purchased with the aim of creating a home base for the activities of our foundation. After three years of renovation, we have transformed the former church into a small-scale concert hall. In the initial phase of the renovation I met the pianist Nino Gvetadze. She was introduced to me by Jan Wijn, a well-known piano pedagogue in the Netherlands. Nino and I had a few conversations and it soon became clear that we are on the same page regarding thoughts about music and youth. So Nino presented her plan to me. An idea to bring young top talent from the piano master’s program at the conservatories into contact with people who are important for their development on the way to their career. And this was the starting signal for the ‘Naarden International Piano Festival’. We are both very proud that it has come to this.

You have a dream but you have to dare to stick your neck out to make it come true. Persevere, don’t hesitate, go after your goal!
Music connects people!
We hope to connect students with master pianists!
Together with Marco Meijdam, our producer and a small team of employees, we are doing our best to put this festival on the map for the future.
We hope to offer you as an audience a few days of beautiful music!

Hankie Bruinsma Verbrugh
Co-founder of the Naarden International Piano Festival
Chairman of the Robert F.W. Bruinsma Foundation

Hankie Bruinsma Verbrugh
© Ronald Knapp

There comes a time for young musicians when they graduate and are about to start independent lives in search of their true identities. This moment has been a turning point for many of us, as we were about to make our own choices, without the guidance of our teachers. As a young independent musician you are the one to choose the repertoire for your future recitals, build a network around you, find the interesting opportunities and the way to keep on growing and developing. For some of the students the transition happens naturally, but many of them need more opportunities and possibilities to create their own network.

Even though we have incredible amount of music competitions around the world and some of them are truly creative and help young artists to develop and give them opportunities to play around the world, I still think, that music is not about competing and we should be able to recognise a talent without the list of many prizes in their biographies.

As a young girl, I had my heroes, pianists, that I admired, but never dared to go near them, as they were completely out of my reach. Time has passed and I personally met some of my heroes and learned so much from them, in a simple conversation and especially while listening to them very closely.

Some time ago I started thinking , what if we could actually create an event, a festival, where young talented pianists could actually meet their heroes, a festival, where there are no sides, but one unity, where young can learn from the experienced and perform on the same stage.

Thanks to Hankie Bruinsma Verbrugh this idea took shape and found its home in Naarden, in a beautiful little concert hall “Bij Andreas”, where it took its start in May 2019. In spring of 2022 we’ll be hosting our 3rd edition, which gives me hope, that, the Festival will create many interesting possibilities for young talented musicians and will establish itself as a yearly event celebrating classical music.

Hope to see you all in Naarden!

Nino Gvetadze
Pianist / Co Founder / and Artistic Director of the Naarden International Piano Festival.