"I have always thought that my music was my densest reflection."
Find below the Timeline as well as the detailed biography of Quentin Dujardin.
Composer & guitarist, Quentin Dujardin creates a unique universe around his nylon-string guitars. His musical projects are marked by lived landscapes or even people he meets along the way. Like a postcard, his music creates bridges between music from elsewhere and our Western musical heritage. His unclassifiable work thus touches on the universal. His path remains immutably attached to sound and emotion.
Notable musical collaborations include Belgian harmonica player Toots Thielemans, American producer Lee Townsend, drummer Manu Katché, Iranian singer Mahsa Vahdat, and Roma violinist Iva Bittova, as well as Bijan Chemirani, Nicolas Fiszman, Njava, Ivan Paduart, Olivier Ker Ourio, Richard Bona, Bert Joris, Matthieu Saglio, Didier Laloy and many others.
work as a composer also leads him to produce the soundtrack for the
theatrical adaptation of Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt's best-selling
Ibrahim & des Fleurs du Coran. In 2011, Quentin
Dujardin is invited to join the International Yehudi
Menuhin Foundation to become an artist ambassador of this association
with international influence. His soundtrack for the film Ma
wins an award in 2012 at the United Nations Forum on Forests.
In 2022, the guitarist received prize of Best Composer at Toronto
Independant Film Festival for its music on the film Paradisiac.
After more than a thousand concerts, his music now counts more than
6 million streams in more than a hundred countries.
This timeline traces major milestones in Quentin's life that marked his musical development.
Quentin Bernard Dujardin
Born on November 17 in Dinant (BE), city of Adolphe Sax, inventor of the saxophone. Grows up in the Condroz region in the village of Durnal, at rue Fontaine de Gore n°8. His father is a lawyer and his mother a Latin/Greek teacher.
Begins classical guitar studies at the Académie des Beaux-Arts de Ciney with Geneviève and Bernard Franco. He thus follows in the footsteps of his big brother, who already plays. He begins music theory lessons alongside his father, Philippe and his five brothers and sisters (Vincent, Bertrand, Gauthier, Noémie & Ambroise). He immerses himself in the music of Lauro, Villa Lobos, Sor, Carulli, Bach, Barrios Mangoré and Brouwer, and listens to the great guitarists on vinyl: John Williams & Julian Bream.
His father gave him his first classical guitar. Becomes a choir boy and gives his first concerts as a duo with his brother Vincent at the village church. Listens on repeat to the very first CD the family bought following a visit to Bruges: Bach's Brandenburg Concertos.
Michèle & Philippe, his parents, regularly welcome different guitarists to the house for the Concours International Printemps de la Guitare. Artists come from all over the world. He receives lessons from Petko Genkov (BGR), Humberto Gonzalez Matamoros (CUB), Luis Mantovani Jr. (BR) and Chibil Benev (BGR). At the same time, his mother opens the restaurant Le Val de Gore in the family home. The living room also becomes an art gallery.
Wins 1st Prize in the Edouard Bastin competition. His father gives him a subscription to “Geniuses of the Blues”, an audio CD series with an encyclopedia that retraces the history of the blues. There he discovers the history of Eric Clapton, Robert Johnson, BB King, John Lee Hooker, etc. He enters the Collège de Saint-Paul in Godinne with a Latin/Greek option.
He receives his first electric guitar, an Epiphone Sheraton, and copies his first guitar solo: Brothers in Arms by Mark Knopfler.
He discovers Philip Catherine's album Transparence in the record library. The cassette copy plays on repeat on his Walkman. His father decides to take him to see his first jazz concert at the Théâtre du Residence Palace in Brussels, with Philip Catherine and Nicolas Fiszman among the other artists on stage. In the process, he decides to tune his radio every evening at 6 p.m. to Musiq3 to listen to Philippe Baron's jazz program. He frequents the only jazz club in the region, based in Dinant and run by Yves Beghuin. He hears Félix Simtaine, Steve Houben, Jean-François Prins, Roger Vanhaverbeke, etc. He works as a bartender there for several summers in a row listening to weekend jazz concerts for free.
Takes his first jazz and improvisation courses with Pierre van Dormael and Erwin Vann at the Académie de Jambes. He discovers Question & answer by Pat Metheny, I took up the runes by Jan Garbarek, Bad Benson by George Benson, Soul Cages by Sting, The dynamic duo by Wes Montgomery & Jimmy Smith, Before we were born by Bill Frisell, L'été indien by L'Ame des poètes, Extensions by Dave Holland, Aka Moon & John McLaughlin on Live at the Royal Festival Hall. At the same time, he receives his classical guitar diploma and perfects his knowledge of classical music history. He begins lessons in classical harmony, chamber music and organ.
Enrolls in the Académie Marcel Désiron d'Amay, studying with Fabien Degryse, and tries to change his vision of his guitar neck. He works hard on his improvisation, rhythm and jazz harmony studies.
Completes various jazz courses with Nathalie Loriers, Bart Defoort, Pierre Vaiana, Fabien Degryse & Pirly Zustrassen.
1996 - 2000
Enters the Royal Brussels Conservatory and five years later obtains a Master 5 degree in jazz & light music. He follows courses given by Peter Hertmans, Karl Van Deun, Kris Defoort and Diederik Wissels.
Records his first CD, La Fontaine de Gore, with Diederik Wissels, and founds the AGUA music label.
Sets off on the roads of Andalusia (ES) to encounter flamenco and the gypsy world. He simultaneously continues his solo and duo concerts with Damien Libert across Belgium. He lives between Granada, Seville, Cordoba, Jerez and his village Durnal.
Leaves for Morocco to encounter Berber and Andalusian music. He discovers the desert on the Mauritanian border and the tribes of the Atlas. He meets the violinist Jalal El Allouli in Marrakech, with whom he records the album Khamis. This disc is produced by RTBF & Didier Mélon. Several tours follow in France, Morocco, Luxembourg, Belgium & Quebec. A TV Live concert at Théâtre 140 is broadcast on the Belgian channel La Deux.
Departure for Paraguay to better understand the extraordinary story of the Guarani composer & guitarist Augustin Marrios Mangoré, indigenous genius. He discovers Las Ruinas Jésuiticas and becomes aware of the importance of the Jesuit humanist thinking he encountered during his high school years.
Records the album Vivre, with Ivan Paduart, Nicolas Fiszman, Jalal El Allouli, Frédéric Malempré and Stephan Lay. The same year he makes his first trip to Madagascar, where he plays with local stars: Daminazy, Remanindry, Proshely and Rasoa Kininike, among others.
Composes the soundtrack for the theatrical adaptation of the best-selling novel Monsieur Ibrahim et les Fleurs du Coran, by Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt, a collaboration with Olivier Massart, Michel Kacenelenbogen and the Théâtre Le Public in Brussels.
In Paris, meets the French director Freddy Mouchard, with whom he travels for two years through Spain, Morocco, Madagascar and the United States. The latter directs the documentary Sur le chemin, about Quentin and his way of experiencing music. He records the album Veloma with Njava, Bai Kamara Jr., Jalal El Allouli, Tuur Florizoone, Arnout Hellofs, Damien Libert and Nicolas Fiszman. Makes his first trip to New York and collaborates on the soundtrack of the publicity film, Answer the Call, with the American actor, Harrison Ford. Produces two albums for Brunoise and Nicolas Pirillo (performing on the Hang). He begins his collaboration with the photographer Jean Mahaux.
He is invited to the World Film Festival in Tartu (EST) and the International Film Festival in Dresden to present the documentary Sur le chemin. There he meets the French countertenor, Samuel Cattiau, with whom he creates the Resonance project the following year.
He records Impressioniste, alongside Toots Thielemans, at the legendary ICP Studios. This record is a tribute to his mother, Michèle who ran an art gallery-restaurant, Le Val de Gore, in the family living room. This place hosted many Belgian, French & English painters. Becomes an artist ambassador for the International Yehudi Menuhin Foundation and participates in international meetings of Tapovan (FR) alongside Thierry van Roy, Iva Bittova & Matthieu Saglio. Travels to Mali, where he gets stuck in the Kalaban Coura district of Bamako waiting to retrieve his backpack, lost at the airport. There he meets Kalil Sidy Haïdara, with whom he forms the Kalaban Coura project. In the same year, together they record the album Aigabani with Jalal El Allouli, Boris Schmidt & Arnout Hellofs.
First collaboration with the American producer, Lee Townsend, at the legendary Fantasy Studios in Berkeley, California, for the production of the album Kalaban Coura. The disc is distributed internationally and is ranked among the best blues albums of the year by world music charts. First writing residency in Drôme (FR) for the Resonance project with Samuel Cattiau. Collaborates in Tunis with the Boston String Quartet for the album Perpetual Motion, by Amine and Hamza Mraihi, with whom he records his composition Omar, dedicated to his Malian painter friend.
Records Distances, again collaborating on the production in Berkeley with Lee Townsend. Release of the compilations Putumayo World Yoga & African Blues N°4 (US), on which Quentin Dujardin appears with the titles 1977 & Mali. His works opens a much wider audience for him on American radio. Records the single Papa Rosa with Jef Neve, Olivier Hernandez & Boris Schmidt.
Composes the soundtrack for the short film Ma Forêt, by Sébastien Pins. The film wins 14 awards and is selected at more than 400 festivals around the world. The soundtrack is awarded at the United Nations Forum on Forests (US). First French tours with Resonance. Collaborates with the Iranian singer Mahsa Vahdat, with whom he records an album alongside Nicolas Fiszman. This disc remains unreleased following a disagreement with its Norwegian producer.
Records the album Resonance in the Romanesque church of Mont-devant-Sassey (FR) with Samuel Cattiau and Matthieu Saglio, production by Thierry Van Roy. Records the disc Catharsis with Ivan Paduart, Richard Bona, Bert Joris, Olivier Ker Ourio & Manu Katché. Produces the Camino project for the Galician singers of Ialma (ES), with whom he gives more than 300 concerts throughout Europe and Canada.
Records the album Illuminations, with Samuel Cattiau, Matthieu Saglio, Léo Ullmann, Doron David Sherwin & Bijan Chemirani, at the Abbaye de Noirlac (FR). Several tours follow in France, Belgium, Morocco, India & Holland.
Records Water & Fire with Didier Laloy & Adrien Tyberghein. They perform more than 80 concerts together. Composes the music for the short film Resonance, La Cité ardente, dedicated to the industrial heritage of the Liège Basin. This project brings together the Choeur symphonique and the Maîtrise l'Opéra Royal de Wallonie-Liège, as well as the members of Resonance.
During confinement, the Belgian government authorizes worship gatherings for up to 15 people, but prohibits gatherings in cultural spaces. To protest these absurd Covid measures, he gives a solo concert on February 14 for 15 people in the Romanesque church of Crupet (BE). He is stopped by the police while performing his Ave Maria. Soon after, on April 30, the guitarist wins his case against the State of Emergency and allows culture to officially re-open by setting a precedent for the entire profession. Releases the first EP, AGUA sessions #01, alongside Didier Laloy, Nicolas Fiszman, Adrien Tyberghein and Manu Katché. Gives several streaming concerts, notably for Julien Brocal's Musical Garden, as well as for the International Yehudi Menuhin Foundation at the Coudenberg Palace.
Receives the prize for Best Composer at Toronto Independant Film Festival for his soundtrack on the movie Paradisiac. His total work exceeds 6 million streams on the net. His first Live album is released with Manu Katché, Didier Laloy & Boris Schmidt at his side. The artist releases also several singles, including Golden Stream and Nomad. To date the guitarist has given more than 1,000 concerts around the world and has collaborated with dozens of musicians, filmmakers, photographers, painters & dancers.
Born in Dinant (Belgium) in 1977, Quentin Dujardin entered the world of classical music very early with his father, who was an unconditional fan of organ music (Bach, Franck, Messiaen, Duruflé, etc.). Quentin was a faithful student at the local music school where he studied guitar, music theory, music history and chamber music.
The discovery in his father’s mostly classical music library of an album by Philip Catherine, the famous Belgium jazz guitarist was a pivotal moment for Quentin. His serious exploration into jazz began at the age of 15. He studied improvisation with Pierre van Dormael & Fabien Degryse who remain an important influence on him in this area. After various internships with musicians such as Nathalie Loriers and Kris Defoort he quickly made up his mind to continue his education at the Royal Flemish Conservatory in Brussels. By now aged 17, his musical encounters increased and it was here that he met Karl van Deun, Fabien Degryse and Diederik Wissels. It was with the latter that five years later he recorded his first album entitled La Fontaine de Gore named after the street he was brought up on. Graduating in jazz en light music, he continued a further year to study film music composition with Dirk Brossé at the Ghent Conservatory.
Guitarist Magazine referred to him stating, "This artist is a sumptuous invitation to voyage."
Toots Thielemans said about him, "Quentin is to me a revelation."
So within the world music audience he gained recognition for his album Khamis, produced by RTBF (National Belgian Radio & Television) and Didier Mélon, which recounted his life of travel and his initial encounter with the Moroccan singer and violinist Jalal El Allouli. A TV Live concert at Théâtre 140 is broadcast on the Belgian channel La Deux. The enthusiasm that met this album allowed him to perform internationally in venues such as Marrakesh' Théâtre Royal, the Esperanzah Festival, Quebec’s Théâtre Capitole, Jazz en Nord, Flagey, Nanduti de Paraguay, etc.The guitarplayer has also been very active on the Belgian jazz scene with his previous two albums La Fontaine de Gore and Vivre in which he worked alongside Diederik Wissels and Ivan Paduart, as well as for his work with Toots Thielemans on his album Impressionniste.
has worked (studio/live) in collaboration with a long list of artists,
including Bai Kamara Jr., Lee Townsend,
Manu Katché, Richard Bona, Diederik Wissels, Jacques Stotzem,
Njava, Toots Thielemans, Nicolas Fiszman,
Iva Bittova, Proshely, Jalal El Allouli,
Ivan Paduart, Matthieu Saglio, Bert
Joris, Prakash Kandasamy, Marc Vella,
Remanindry, Hamza M'raihi, Tuur
Florizoone, Goran Milosevic, Abdelah
Gynea, Thierry Van Roy, Philippe Aerts,
Volker Biesenbender, Didier Laloy, Marlène Dorcena
and Abaji. Since 2003 he has performed more than 1000
concerts throughout Belgium and internationally (France, Spain, Luxemburg,
Switzerland, Madagascar, Morocco, Canada, Paraguay, Estonia,etc.).
In 2008, The French director, Freddy Mouchard made a documentary movie Sur le chemin about his way of living music around the world. The movie was selected by the Worldfilm Festival 2009 of Tartu (Estonia) and the Festival Cinéma Méditerranéen de Bruxelles 2008. His album Veloma is the original soundtrack from the movie.
His artistic generosity also finds expression in the more discreet activity of writing and composing in contexts other then his own album production. He worked on the soundtrack for the theatrical adaptation of Eric-Emmanuel Schmitt’s bestseller Monsieur Ibrahim et les fleurs du Coran; on the original soundtrack for the TV campaign Answer the Call, a benefit fund for the families of New York City fireman policemen; for the Kaos string quartet on the occasion of the Spanish Presidency of the European Union; and for various RTBF commissions such as the Mais où est le camera? He has also as well remixed the lounge compilations Salon Oriental Vol. 3 & 4 brought out on EMI France and M10 and worked as a producer for Brunoise, a project by Argentinean artist, Nicolas Pirillo.
In 2016, Quentin Dujardin produced the famous album from Ialma (Galician singers) called Camino. He followed the band on tour for more than 300 concerts around Europe and Canada.