Niek de Groot Bio English
Dutch double bassist Niek de Groot is one of today's leading soloists on his instrument. Originally a trumpet-player he started playing the double-bass at 18. Within an unusually short time he became principal bass with several European ensembles, including a 10-year tenure as principal Solo-Bass with the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra.
After his formal studies he further developed his skills at the Banff Centre for the Arts, Canada. Niek's playing has benefited a great deal also from attending masterclasses with eminent cellists Frans Helmerson, Lluìs Claret, Laurence Lesser and in collaborations with Leonard Bernstein, György Sebök and Mstislav Rostropovich.
Over the last years Niek de Groot has dedicated himself entirely to chambermusic and solo performances. He performs regularly at the best known concerthalls and music festivals. Besides standard repertoire he includes a great deal of contemporary music. He has worked closely with composers such as Kurtág, Stockhausen, Saariaho, Vasks and Gubaidulina. He recorded solo-CD’s for EMI, NIMBUS and BIS a.o.
Upcoming projects include the release of a new version of György Kurtág’s ‘Sudelbücher’ for BMC recorded with the composer, a CD with French music with pianist Catherine Klipfel for ORLANDO Records, the recording of Sofia Gubaidulina’s ‘Galgenlieder à 3’ for KAIROS and Culiner Creative Circle and the world-premiere and registration of the new Double Bass Concerto by Sebastian Fagerlund for BIS.
Since 1996 Niek is Senior Professor for Double Bass at the Folkwang University of Arts, Essen, being the only French-Bow playing bassist ever to hold such a position in Germany. He also taught at institutions in Norway, the Netherlands, Italy, Spain and regularly gives master classes worldwide. Many of his former and current students play in Europe's foremost orchestras and ensembles.
Throughout his career, Niek de Groot had the privilege to play on rare double basses by Cerutti, Bajoni, Candi, Amati and lately the double bass made in 1737 by Domenico Montagnana. Recently he also started playing an instrument custom made for him by Anneke Degen, Hamburg, 2019. His bows are developed for him by Jochen Schmidt. His baroque and classical bows are by Gerhard Landwehr.