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• one of the most outstanding Dutch composers of his generation, with his expressively powerful music and an idiomatic sense for the stage, combining sounds and scenic images in a play of changing perspectives
• creates his imaginative music theatre works as a film and stage director as well as composer
• after training as music recording engineer at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, studied composition with Diderik Wagenaar, Gilius van Bergeijk and Louis Andriessen; completed a course in film directing at the New York Film Academy, and collaborated with film makers Peter Greenaway and Hal Hartley, and with choreographers including Philippe Blanchard
• is programmed at leading festivals for contemporary music, his works being played by many renowned international
• awarded the Gaudeamus Prize (1999), the Vermeulen Prize (2004, for One), a Siemens Grant (2005), the Charlotte Köhler Prize (2005), the Hindemith Prize (2006), the Kagel Prize (2013), the Grawemeyer Award (2013, for Up-close), the Johannes Vermeer Award (2015) and the International Opera Award (2021, for Upload)
• recordings on the Col Legno, Harmonia Mundi, Composer’s Voice, BVHaast, X-OR and VPRO Eigenwijs labels

Works by Michel van der Aa include:
Upload (2019–20) Film opera
The Book of Water (2021–22) Chamber music theatre for actor, string quartet, and film
Up-close (2010) for solo cello, string ensemble and film
Violin Concerto (2014) for violin and orchestra

Looking Ahead: works on a new music theatre work for Dutch National Opera

"One of the most distinctive of the younger composers in Europe today. His ability to fuse music, text and visual images into a totally organic whole sets him apart from nearly all his contemporaries." — Andrew Clements, The Guardian

Also visit the Michel van der Aa website at www.vanderaa.net

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