Born in 1990, Hans Vercauteren is a Belgian composer and conductor. He studied composition with Wim Henderickx and attained his master’s degree magna cum laude in 2013 at the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp, where he also studied orchestral conducting with Ivo Venkov and Koen Kessels. After his studies he attended personal conducting lessons with Ed Spanjaard. He is currently based in London and is on the Artist Diploma course (composition) of the Royal College of Music in London, supervised by Kenneth Hesketh and Jonathan Cole. He is also an RCM Award Holder supported by a Musicians’ Company Lambert Studentship.
During his studies he conducted several concerts with ensembles from the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp, including two opera projects for which he re-orchestrated operas of Verdi, Massenet and Bizet. Hans also conducted his own works at his bachelor’s and final master’s recital with the contemporary Ensemble XXI. He actively participated in the European Improvisation Project of 2012 in the Hague. He also joined the masterclasses with Robin Engelen and Het collectief (Pierrot Lunaire), and with Ivo Venkov and the Philharmonic Orchestra of Russe-Bulgaria performing Beethoven’s Symphony No. 7.
As a composer Hans made his professional debut in 2012 with his opus 1, Ich glaub nicht, an orchestral song commissioned by the Chamber Orchestra of Belgium (conductor: Benjamin Haemhouts, soprano: Hanne Roos). This work marked the start of a strong co-operation with the orchestra, for which he arranged Gioacchino Rossini’s suite La Boutique Fantasque and several works of Astor Piazzolla. In 2014 he composed the tune A Choice in honour of the orchestra’s new name, Casco Phil. The work premiered during a live broadcast of the Belgian television program De Zevende Dag. In summer 2016 he was the composer for Croque Malines, the orchestra’s first music summer camp for children and in December 2015 he also won the second price at the Euregio Composition Competition.
As a conductor he is the artistic leader of the Academic Symphony Orchestra in Mortsel, with whom he performed Stephen Sondheim’s complete Sweeney Todd in April 2016. In March 2014 he conducted W.A. Mozart’s Symphony N°29 and the Sinfonia Concertante with violinist Mikhail Bezverknhy, violist Laurent Tardat and a conservatory student orchestra of Antwerp & Brussels. Appointed by the Kask Royal Conservatory of Ghent he conducted two series (February & June) of Benjamin Britten’s complete Turn of the Screw, with director Gidon Saks as part of the Graduate Festival. May 2015 Hans conducted Felix Mendelssohn’s Elias (German version) in Belgium followed by a series of performances of Henry Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas (March and May 2016).