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Obe Vermeulen (2001) is a Belgian composer and conductor living in London. His repertoire consists of a wide range of styles, from contemporary concert works to film, theatre & dance music and even exhibition soundtracks. Recent collaborations include Antwerp Symphony Orchestra, Londen Musical Theatre Orchestra, English National Ballet School, Flemish Radio Choir, HERMESensemble, I SOLISTI ensemble, Camerata Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra and many others. Obe participated in masterclasses led by world-renowned composers and conductors, such as Harry Gregson-Williams, Mark-Anthony Turnage, Wim Henderickx, Frederik Neyrinck, David Hill, Angel Velez and Dirk De Caluwé.

The composer studied at some of Europe’s finest institutions for classical music. At age 15, a new composition department was created at the Lemmens Institute, especially for him. He studied here for two years with Geert Callaert. Obe received his bachelor’s degree at the Royal Conservatory, School of Arts in Ghent, where he studied with Dirk Brossé and Daan Janssens. He is currently studying composition, composition for screen and conducting at the Royal College of Music in London with Errollyn Wallen, Mike Ladouceur and Howard Williams. He will graduate in 2024.

For the premieres of Obe’s music, he worked together with internationally acclaimed conductors, among them Martijn Dendievel, Graham Ross, Benjamin Haemhouts, Filip Rathé, Wim Henderickx, Dimitri Bracke, Bart Picqueur & Bart Naessens. 

ISCM-Flanders (Matrix) comments on Vermeulen’s piece ‘J’ai perdu mon corps’: “This young composer handles orchestral colours and textures with skill and a remarkable natural flair, and is not afraid of a ‘big’ sound, thanks to his intelligent use of percussion.”. The Guardian described Obe’s rap-infused song ‘One of Our Own’ as “an anarchic delight”.

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ABOUT

In 2021, Obe released his first album with solo music. For this album, he worked with some of Flanders’ most prominent musicians, such as Inge Smedts, Anthony Devriendt, Stijn Saveniers, Pieter Nuytten and Marc Tooten. Even whilst living in the UK, he keeps his connection with the music scene in Belgium. Recent engagements include a commission for Núna ensemble, an original soundtrack for ‘Are You In There?’ a short by Victor Longin, arrangements for Minor Scale Music publisher and collaborations with local ensembles such as Arte Musicale and Tínel ensemble. Obe is a composition, harmony and orchestration teacher at the music school Lochristi & De Pinte and still fulfils the role of arranger and orchestrator for Brass Party.

​His composition ‘Explore’ premiered on Belgian national TV on 16 April 2021, performed by the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra and conducted by Wim Henderickx. Several of his other compositions were played on the Belgian classical radio station Klara. The composer collaborated in 2022 with Wim van den Driessche on ‘Enigma, the Story of Alan Turing’. A 50-minute concert work for a symphony orchestra and narrator, telling the story of British mathematician Alan Turing (1912-1954).

Obe composed the soundtrack for short films ‘Un monsieur qui a du souffle’ (2020), ‘The Long Expected’ (2020), ‘Young’ (2021) and ‘Are You In There?’ (2023). He conducted the recording sessions for the short films ‘The Long Expected’ (2020), ‘Young’ (2021), ‘Duet’ (2022), ‘A Man Buys His Wife A Plant’ (2023), ‘Reunify’ (2023), 'Atomic No.85' (2023) and continues to do this while he is a much sought after session conductor in London.

Future collaborations include Núna Ensemble, Explore Ensemble, Arte Musicale and Young Belgian Talent.

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