Nikolaas Kende, Belgium, 2018

Tour Dates: 14th March - 26th March, 2018

Nikolaas Kende studied at the Antwerp conservatory with his parents, Heidi Hendrickx and Levente Kende, and at the Amsterdam conservatory with Jan Wijn...

Tour Dates
  • 14th March - 26th March, 2018


"Poet in every inch of his fingers."   -- Le Progres

"This was poetry in which each note was placed with care and every phrase played with musicality."   -- 

Nikolaas Kende studied at the Antwerp conservatory with his parents, Heidi Hendrickx and Levente Kende, and at the Amsterdam conservatory with Jan Wijn. This was followed by intense cooperation with Elisso Virsaladze at the Hochschule für Musik und Theater München and at the Scuola di Musica Fiesole. In addition he was taught by people like Dmitri Bashkirov, Aldo Ciccolini, Murray Perahia, Dmitri Alexeev and Radu Lupu.

While still young Nikolaas Kende won several competitions: the Cantabile competition (Antwerp, 1998), the EPTA international competition for piano duos (1999), the Axion Classics competition (Brussels, 1999), the Stefaan de Jonghe competition (Aalst, 2000) and the Tenuto competition (Brussels, 2002).
In 2002 he was a laureate of the Belgian Foundation for Young Soloists, in 2004 he came second in the competition of the Young Pianist Foundation in The Hague, and in 2005 he won the Pianisten Parade
in ’s-Hertogenbosch, in which he also obtained the prizes of the public and of the press. In the next year he was a laureate of the 6th music competition of the Ghent Rotary Club and he won the 57th competition organized by the Friends of the Concertgebouw Amsterdam and the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra. In this competition too he won the prize of the press and the AVRO Klassiek prize, which enabled him to record his first solo CD. In 2007 he was a laureate of the Young Soloists Competition organized by the Royal Flemish Philharmonic, conducted by Philippe Herreweghe.

Since his succesful participation at the Queen Elisabeth Competition (2007), concerts have taken him to important festivals and halls. Amongst others to the Netherlands, France (festival Montpellier, festival Menton, festival Vexin), Germany, Spain, Portugal, Italy, Austria, Bulgaria, Czech Republic and the Dutch Antilles. His American debut (California and Texas) in 2009 got favorable press reviews, and he followed it up with another American tour in 2013. In 2015 he made his debut in Africa (South-Africa and Mozambique).

As a soloist has played concertos by Bach, Mozart, Beethoven, Chopin, Brahms, Tchaikovsky, Poulenc, Ravel, Rakhmaninov and Bartók, with orchestras such as the Brussels Philharmonic, the Orchestre Royal de Chambre de Wallonie, the Royal Flemish Philharmonic and the Flanders Symphony Orchestra conducted by Etienne Siebens, Koen Kessels, Ivo Venkov, Jurgen Küssmaul, Ernst van Tiel, Daniele Callegari, Dirk Vermeulen, Paul Goodwin, Stephen Heyde and David Angus among others.

Nikolaas Kende is also an avid chamber musician. Since 2003 he has formed a duo with the violinist Jolente De Maeyer and he was a co-founder of the Rubens Ensemble in 2007. He was the pianist of the Narziss und Goldmund Trio in their recording of Schubert’s Piano Trio in E flat.

He has made numerous recordings for radio (the Belgian classical channel Klara, RTBF, AVRO, Radio Romania, France Musique , WDR) and television.

In september 2015 he took up the professorship piano at the Royal Conservatory of Antwerp after being assistent and guest professor for 10 years at the same conservatory.