Dutch saxophonist Arno Bornkamp (1959) is the archetype of the modern virtuoso, feeling equally at home in traditional and contemporary repertoire. Hailed as a lyrical musician with a great sense of performance, Bornkamp studied at the Sweelinck Conservatory in Amsterdam with Ed Bogaard and graduated in 1986 with the highest distinction.
He has won many awards, the 'Silver Laurel of the Concertgebouw' and the 'Netherlands Music Prize' among the most noteworthy. The latter enabled him to go abroad, studying in France with Daniel Deffayet and Jean-Marie Londeix, in Japan with Ryo Noda as well as working with composers as Luciano Berio and Karlheinz Stockhausen.
Since his 1982 solo debut in Rome, performing the Concertino da camera by Jacques Ibert, he has played more than two hundred concerts with orchestras around the world, including the most important works from the saxophone repertoire in addition to new concerti written especially for him, such as the Tallahatchie Concerto by Jacob TV. Recently Bornkamp added three new works to his already large repertoire: saxophone concerti by Joey Roukens and Carlos Michans and the Trois danses (orig. for oboe) by Frank Martin. This fits perfectly into Bornkamp’s ambassadorship for new music: throughout his whole career he has collaborated with composers such as Martijn Padding, Christian Lauba, Peter van Onna, Otto Ketting, Louis Andriessen, Jacob ter Veldhuis, Simon Burgers, Wijnand van Klaveren, Perry Goldstein and many others.
In addition to his solo career, chamber music is one of Arno Bornkamp’s great loves. For over thirty-five years Bornkamp has been a member the Aurelia Saxophone Quartet and his duo with pianist Ivo Janssen exists almost as long. Additionally, Bornkamp has taken part in a unique ensemble: Clazz Ensemble, made up of musicians from both the jazz and classical worlds. Arno Bornkamp's many activities (including concerts, festivals, masterclasses, lectures) have taken him to many countries in Europe, the USA, the Far East and South America, The many CDs he has made since 1990 have garnered national and international praise.
Being one of the important personalities of saxophone in the world, Bornkamp has taken the initiative to create SAX14, a huge multidisciplinary saxophone festival in Amsterdam in November 2014, celebrating the 200th birthday of Adolphe Sax, the inventor of the saxophone.
Arno Bornkamp is a renowned teacher, leading an international saxophone class at the Conservatorium van Amsterdam. In the summer he teaches various master classes.