of affiliated composers


Robert CASTEELS leads a distinguished professional life as a conductor, composer, researcher, educator and arts administrator. He believes that these different activities, far from being incompatible, form a kaleidoscopic experience of music.

A brilliant academic course of studies culminating in advanced level distinctions in piano, orchestral conducting in Brussels, was followed by postgraduate diplomas at the “Guildhall School of Music and Drama of London” and at “The Juilliard School of Music” in New York. Robert Casteels studied composition privately with Fernand Quinet and peter Maxwell Davies.

In 2001 Robert Casteels was selected and awarded the Christoffel Plantin prize. Robert is the youngest laureate and one of only three musician laureates. This prestigious award recognizes only one recipient per year for an “extraordinary contribution in the fields of arts and science”, in Robert’s case, his contribution to cross-cultural research.

Robert Casteels has composed a large number of multidisciplinary works, which combine organically and harmoniously the Gamelan orchestra, European, Indian and Chinese instruments as well as computer generated sounds and visual images. For these cross-cultural works, Robert scientifically analyzed the acoustics of gamelan gongs. He designed special tuning systems, which enable him to superimpose musical scales from different cultures. Consequently, he also devised new notation systems. In 2001 Robert published the VCD “No Face”, the CD “Set Sail” and “Berlayar”, a two-volume monograph on his multidisciplinary compositions.

In 2002, “Hui Rao” for sixteen horns and Chinese percussion and “L” (autre) fille aux cheveux de Bali” for Gamelan, vibraphone and Chinese strings were commissioned and performed at the launch of the World Association for Symphonic Bands and Ensembles in the presence of RAdm Teo Chee Hean, then Minister for Education and the opening of the Contemporary Asian Arts Centre respectively. “Sonata Profana” for triple orchestra and Balinese gangsa, was commissioned by The Centre for the Arts, NUS and was premiered by the NUS Wind Symphony, the NUS Chinese Orchestra and the Philharmonic Winds. “Elegy for the men you don’t meet ev’ryday” for Chinese Orchestra, Balinese gamelan, chorus of trombones and Quinton was composed in memory of Kuo Pao Kun and John McNally and first performed by the SAF MDC Chinese Orchestra under the baton of the composer in November 2002. Recently Robert Casteels completed two important commissions : “Spirit of Wood” for the first special exhibition of the Asian Arts Civilisations Museum in September 2003 with Minister Dr Lee Boon Yang, Minister of information, Communications and the Arts as Guest-of Honour and “A day in the Life of a Garden” in the Ballroom of The Istana in December 03 for the launch of the Garden City Fund graced by Deputy Prime Minister BG Lee Hsien Loong.

[© CeBeDeM]


  • 66 op. 83, 2012
    six cellos 00:18:00
  • A day in the life of a garden, 2003
    piano, percussion and tape 00:07:45
  • A line runs away...1, 2009
    kayagum, quinton and mime 00:06:00
  • A line runs away...2, 2009
    2 gu zheng and string quartet 00:06:00
  • A Mirror of Sound, 2009
    aerophone and piano 00:08:00
  • Aenhoort ick sal beghinne, 1981
    women's choir 00:02:00
  • Arachnè, 2009
    flute 00:08:30
  • Berlayar ke Mata Hari, 1997
    percussion (2 and more) 00:00:00
  • Berlayar ke Mata Hari vol.II, 2001
    percussion (2 and more) 00:00:00
  • Bird Songs, 2009
    four voices and ensemble 00:09:30
  • Centennial symphony, 2005
    orchestra 00:35:15
  • Chiaroscuro, 2010
    two guitars 00:03:10
  • City Scape op. 86, 2012
    Niiboriorchestra and electro acoustic sounds 00:04:00
  • De Kaartridder op. 80, 2012
    mixed Choir and orchestra 01:00:00
  • El jardin de la Vida y la Muerte op. 76, 2011
    dancers and orchestra 00:20:00
  • Elegy to the men you don't meet ev'ry day, 2002
    orchestra 00:15:00
  • Greed & Fear op. 79, 2012
    string quartet, temple bell, Wall street market bell, video and electro acoustic music 00:19:00
  • Holler across the Holler, 2009
    percussions and 40 wind instruments 00:18:00
  • In Praise of Sake op. 88-5, 2012
    Baritone and percussion 00:03:20
  • Kerstliederensuite, 2009
    Choir and orchestra 00:50:00
  • Kreisleriana, 2004
    n violins and orchestra 00:10:00
  • Krus Ng Aking Ina op. 88-1
    male solo voice and guitar 00:02:00
  • Kyawulsarang op. 88/4, 2012
    Soprano and cello 00:04:20
  • L'(autre) fille aux cheveux de Bali, 2002
    percussion (2 and more) 00:04:00
  • Music from the Heart op. 88, 2013
    voices and various intruments 00:40:00
  • Qie Yu, 2001
    speech choir and orchestra 00:18:00
  • Rakhmania op. 23/2, 2010
    2 pianos 00:00:00
  • Regina Caeli, 1983
    female choir and bell 00:00:00
  • Se Ora op. 88/2, 2013
    Soprano and viraphone 00:02:45
  • Shame, Shame, 2011
    voice, ikel, morin khuur, danshig and piano 00:08:00
  • Simple-X, 2010
    eight violins, four violas, four celli, two contrabasses, one grand piano or har 00:12:00
  • Sonata profana, 2002
    triple orchestra 00:25:00
  • Song of the open road, 2008
    Tenor and piano 00:03:30
  • Sound Journey, 2006
    percussion trio on listening pavilion 00:00:00
  • Spirit of wood, 2003
    4 percussionists and tape 00:05:34
  • Sui Yuen, 2002
    piano 00:02:00
  • Symphony n°3, 2006
    Chinese orchestra 00:13:00
  • Symphony n°5 op. 87, 2012
    brassband, cosmic sounds, moving images and text 00:34:00
  • Symphony nr.2, 2006
    mixed Choir and orchestra 00:24:00
  • Symphony nr.2, 2006
    mixed choir and piano 00:24:00
  • Taman Suara, 2007
    theremin, oboe., sax, 3 guitars, 3 pianos, 2 perc. 00:41:00
  • The Orator op. 84-1, 2012
    violin solo 00:06:00
  • The Orator op. 84-2, 2012
    twi violins and electronics 00:09:00
  • Tintinabulum, 2009
    two pianos 00:07:00
  • Trio, 2007
    violin, cello and piano 00:00:00
  • Trois-vingts, 2009
    violin, cello, harp and piano 00:05:00
  • Two hymns: 1. God so loved the world, 2006
    mixed choir and organ 00:03:00
  • Two hymns: 2. Easter hymn Christ is risen today, 2006
    mixed choir and piano 00:03:00
  • Warum ist das Licht?, 1996
    Soprano, organ and wind instruments 00:09:00
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