Hearing something that moves you, and which you have never heard before: for composer and trombonist Arjan Linker this is the ultimate musical experience. And luckly there are many things to discover and be surprised by. Everytime you find something the next adventure is already around the corner, and this makes music a never-ending adventure!
Linker started his musical adventure by starting to compose at a young age and has been searching for new sounds, discoveries and surprises ever since. On this adventure he never lost the connection with existing repertoire: examples of important influences are Maurice Ravel, Irshad Khan, John Adams, Adriaen Willaert, J Dilla and Lili Boulanger. This leads to a big diversity in Linkers work, stretching from hip-hop grooves to counterpoint and polyphony to soundscapes. His music has been performed in all major concerthalls of the Netherlands and has been recorded on multiple albums.
Linkers adventure continues in the field of performance, as a trombone player. He is an experienced improvisator implementing live electronics, pushes the boundaries of the instrument and commissioned dozens of pieces from living composers. Outside of contemporary music Linker searches for new possibilities: since 2021 he has been studying Indian classical music intensively and he will travel to Mumbai in 2023 to continue his studies. Next to this he has always been interested in the practice of ornamentation and improvisation in the Italian renaissance. Recently Linker is studying medieval music and joined a surprising project playing pop music.
Both the Nymphéas Trombone Quartet and the Nachtlicht Ensemble are founded by Linker and make projects for which he composes, arranges, performs and improvises. Apart from his work for his ensembles he also makes projects with new formations of musicians and visual artists.
This lead to him receiving a carte blanche from the Grachtenfestival in 2021-2022 as a New Maker of the festival. Linker made a new group which improvises time capsules live on stage in the performance Tijdcapsules.
The Nederlands Blazers Ensemble has been, and is still a very important ensemble for Linker. Recently he has been playing with the ensemble and frequently arranges music for their concerts. He made a new version of Bach’s Matthäus Passion for multiple tours with singer Claron McFadden and is arranger in the yearly composition contest.
For his work as a composer, trombonist and improvisor Linker has been awarded the Prijs voor Jong Talent 2023 from Kunst aan de Dijk Kortenhoef, a second prize at the Prinses Christina Compositieconcours, the Koninklijk Conservatoriumprijs voor jonge compoisten, he won the composition contest of the Nederlands Blazers Ensemble and was awarded the prizes for culture of the municipality of Emmen and the province of Drenthe.
Linker studied classical composition and classical trombone at the Conservatory of Amsterdam with teachers Richard Ayres, Wim Henderickx, Willem Jeths, Meriç Artaç, Pierre Volders, Remko de Jager, Jörgen van Rijen and Bart van Lier.