MAAIKE DEN DUNNEN
Maaike den Dunnen is a jazz-singer who not only sings. She also composes, writes lyrics, writes arrangements, leads her own projects and plays the piano now and then. An interesting combination between humor, lyricism and intelligence is what characterizes her striking musical personality. With one foot solidly rooted in the jazz-tradition, she explores new paths with the other. She delivers any kind of music with an infectious energy and a fair amount of vocal improvisation.
Even before recording her debut, Den Dunnen gained aknowledgement on an international level. In 2011, den Dunnen was mentioned twice in Downbeat Magazine (USA), winning the title ‘Outstanding Performance’ in 2 categories of the Downbeat Student Music Awards. Being the only European among the winners, she was highlighted in the categories ‘Vocal Jazz Soloist’ and ‘Jazz Arrangement’ (for her arrangement of ‘Spring Is Here’). In the same year, her own group Maaike den Dunnen European Quintet has been selected for the finals of the EBU European Jazz Competition (EU). During the finals, she performed a 45-minute-concert with original music during the North Sea Jazz Festival 2011 (Holland). In 2010, den Dunnen sang as a soloist with the RTV Big Band (SI), sharing the stage with Croatian vibraphone-legend Bosko Petrovic. In 2009, den Dunnen represented The Netherlands in the European Jazz Orchestra, during a 3-week-tour through the East-European countries, directed by the famous big-band-leader Peter Herbolzheimer. In Holland, her home country, den Dunnen founded Jazzin’ Je Moerstaal (translated: ‘Jazzin’ Your Mother Tongue’), a project with original music that creates an unusual cross-over between jazz and the Dutch language.
Den Dunnen studied jazz-singing in two schools. With Fay Claassen as her main teacher, she finished her bachelors’ degree at the Rotterdam Conservatory (NL), with a specialisation in jazz-composition/arrangement (main teacher: Ed Partyka). With Dena DeRose as her main-teacher, she finished her masters’ degree at the University of Music and Performing Arts, Graz (AT). She participated in various masterclasses and private lessons with guest teachers such as Jay Clayton, Jim McNeely, Deborah Brown, Darmon Meader and many more. In 2010, den Dunnen travelled to New York (USA) to take lessons and sing at various jam-sessions (in jazz-clubs such as Smoke, Smalls, Fat Cat, etc).
To learn more about the musical projects that den Dunnen is leading and participating in, please check the ‘projects’-section.