Dirk Ridder Brossé, born in Ghent, Belgium, in 1960, is a versatile composer and a respected conductor in international music life.
Dirk Brossé began his musical studies at the conservatories of Ghent and Brussels, and then specialized in conducting in Maastricht, Vienna and Cologne. He obtained his diploma in orchestral conducting at the Musikhochschule in Cologne. Besides many guest professorships, he is currently a teacher of composition and orchestral conducting at the Hogeschool Gent.
Dirk Brossé conducted some of the most important Belgian orchestras, including the Flemish Radio Orchestra, the Philharmonie, the Symphonic Orchestra of the Flemish Opera and the National Orchestra of Belgium. He conducts top orchestras worldwide, including the London Symphony Orchestra, the London Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic, Vancouver Opera, Opéra de Lyon, Hong Kong Chinese Orchestra, L' Orchester de la Suisse Romande, the Philharmonic Orchestra of Shanghai, the KBS Symphony Orchestra of South Korea, the World Symphony Orchestra in Japan, Chamber orchestra of Philadelphia, The Ulster Symphony Orchestra of Northern Ireland, Camerata St. Petersburg, the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra and the National Orchestras of Venezuela, Colombia and Ecuador. In the summer of 2012, Brossé led a spectacular tour of the European Union Youth Orchestra.
Dirk Brossé is a versatile and prolific composer. He wrote some 400 works including concertos, oratorios, songs, chamber music as well as symphonic works that have been performed worldwide and have been recorded in more than 40 countries. His most important works are: La Soledad de América Latina, written in collaboration with. Nobel laureate Gabriel Garcia Marquez; Artesia, a universal symphony for orchestra and ethnic instruments; the ethno-classical symphony The Birth of Music; the oratorio Juanelo; the song cycles Landuyt cycle and La Vida es un Sueno; the War Concerto for clarinet and orchestra and the violin concertos Black, White & Between and Sophia. He recently composed Haiku Cycle 1, written for Jessye Norman and based on Haikus by Herman van Rompuy, former EU president. He also composed a guitar concerto in collaboration with The Chinese Orchestra from Hong Kong. Brossé also arranged various works by Queen, Pink Floyd, Leonard Cohen for voice and orchestra for example for the Noord Nederlands Orkest, and was very successful during tours through the Netherlands.
Theater and film
Dirk Brossé also composes music for theater and film. The best-known soundtracks are Koko Flannel, Licht, De Kavijaks and Daens van Stijn Coninx (Academy Award Nomination 1993); Marie by Marian Handwerker (best film at the Venice Festival in 1994), Knetter by Martin Koolhoven and the silent film Visages d'Enfants by Jacques Feyder from 1925. Brossé was nominated for an Emmy Award for the music to the BBC/HBO series Parade's End. He wrote the music for the musicals Sacco & Vanzetti, The Prince of Africa, Tintin - De Zonnetempel, Rembrandt and Daens, each time in close collaboration with Frank Van Laecke.
In 2007 Dirk made his debut in the Royal Albert Hall in London. He conducted the London Symphony Orchestra with soloists Emma Thompson and Kenneth Branagh.
Dirk Brossé has made many CD recordings and has conducted in renowned concert halls such as Het Concertgebouw Amsterdam, the Royal Festival Hall and the Barbican Center in London, the Seoul Arts Center, the Royal Albert Hall London, De Munt Brussels, Tokyo Forum, the Concert Hall Shanghai and the Victoria Hall Geneva. In 2016, he made his debut at New York's Carnegie Hall.
He has recorded over 100 CDs and collaborated with top artists including José Van Dam, Philip Webb, Barbara Hendricks, Claron McFadden, Julia Migenes, Derek Lee Ragin, Guy de Mey, Sabine Meyer, Julian Lloyd Webber, Daniel Blumenthal, Salvatore Accardo and in a broader musical field with John Williams, Toots Thielemans, Hans Zimmer, Elmer Bernstein, Emma Thompson, Kenneth Branagh, Randy Crawford, Lisa Gerrard, Mel Brooks, Maurane, Sinead O'Connor, Viktor Lazlo, Maurice Jarre and Youssou N' dour..
Dirk Brossé has been music director and chief conductor of the Chamber Orchestra of Philadelphia since 2010, giving many concerts with this chamber orchestra.
Dirk Brossé was awarded the title of Cultural Ambassador of Flanders, and was awarded the Golden Honorary Medal of the Flemish Parliament, the Achille-Van Acker Prize, the Joseph Plateau Honorary Award and the Award for Excellence in Cultural Creativity by the Global Thinkers Forum. In 2013, Dirk Brossé was granted hereditary nobility with the personal title of knight, for his great achievements in music for his country Belgium.
He has also been appointed Commander of the Order of Leopold by HRH King Philip of Belgium.
Brossé is a member of the Board of Directors of SABAM, he is also Advisory Board Member of the independent think tank 'Itinera Institute' and board member of the African Childrens' Choir. He is also a member of the Flemish Royal Academy of Belgium for Sciences and Arts.
All of Dirk Brossé's compositions are available on CD, including an extensive 6CD box set published in 2010 by EMI. In 2016 Brossé's Cello concerto for Isabelle was released on CD, with the London Symphony Orchestra and cellist Marie Hallynck.