Paul Van Nevel

Current as of July 2023

Paul Van Nevel is the artistic director of the Huelgas Ensemble, which he founded in 1971 as an extension of his work with the Schola Cantorum Basiliensis. He is known as a pioneer of European polyphony from the Middle Ages to the Renaissance, and represents an interdisciplinary approach to original sources, taking into account the spirit of the times. His research into unknown works focusses particularly on the forgotten treasures of Franco-Flemish polyphony. His concert programmes are full of surprises, due to their original perspectives.

Paul Van Nevel has been a visiting lecturer at the Sweelinck Conservatorium in Amsterdam, the Hanover University of Music, Drama and Media and the Atelier de musique ancienne at the Conservatoire de Musique de Genève. For 30 years he has been a guest conductor of the Netherlands Chamber Choir.

Paul Van Nevel is also active as a writer. He has released a monograph about Johannes Ciconia and a work about Nicolas Gombert, and has published transcriptions of Renaissance music with Bärenreiter. He has also written a book about Lisbon which describes his 30-year relationship with this city. In 2018 he released the book The Landscape of the Polyphonists about the Franco-Flemish School; it was awarded the Luc Verbekeprijs in 2019 by the Committee for French Flanders.

Paul Van Nevel has received numerous awards, among them the ‘In honorem’ of the Académie Charles Cros (1994), the CHOC du Monde de la Musique, the Edison Prize, the Cannes Classical Award, several Caecilia Prizes from the Belgian music press, the German Record Critics’ Award, and several Diapason d’Or and ECHO Klassik Awards.

His recordings The Eton Choirbook (Sony Classical, 2012) and La Oreja de Zurbarán (Cypres Records, 2014) were much praised by the international press. He received the Diapason d’Or for The Treasures of Claude Le Jeune (Sony Classical) in 2014 and for Wolfgang Rihm’s ET LUX (ECM) in 2015. His recent awards for recordings with the Huelgas Ensemble have included the 2017 Choc from the magazine Classica and the German Record Critics’ Award for their CD recording The Mirror of Monteverdi, the 2019 OPUS Klassik for their recording of Francesca Caccini’s opera La liberazione di Ruggiero dall’isola d’Alcina, the Choc de Classica in October 2022 for their CD recording The Landscape of the Polyphonists and the OPUS Klassik ‘Ensemble of the Year’ Award for En Albion.

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