B-Classic - Laurens Mariën

Laurens Mariën

 Laurens Mariën (b. 1990), studied diction and drama at Kunsthumaniora Antwerp before obtaining a master’s degree in autonomous design at KASK School of Arts in Ghent.

During his studies, Mariën began curating exhibitions and making music. This gave rise to the group Soldier’s Heart, an indie pop band that won the first edition of De Nieuwe Lichting, a music competition held by Studio Brussels. The band played various venues in Belgium and abroad, including events like Pukkelpop, Nos Alive, Crammerock, OLT and Leffingeleuren. When the band broke up in 2017, Mariën began writing songs for Dolly Bing (Elisabeth Van Dam) and composing music for director and performer Benjamin Abel Meirhaeghe, first for Swings and then for My Protest and Nachten. In 2020 he composed the music for A Revue, Meirhaeghe’s first major opera. In addition to writing new music, he also reworked existing repertoires. Together, Mariën and Meirhaeghe created Spectacles in 2021, in which the worlds of theatre and pop music intertwine and converge. They will go on tour this year, performing at venues such as Ancienne Belgique, Het STUK, Wonderland, Pilar and NEXT Festival. Mariën has also worked with Anna Verkouteren Jansen and Rani Decock (The Story of Still, 2021) as a composer/performer and with the Canadian theatre company Mammalian Diving Reflex (All the Sex, 2019).

As a curator, he founded the event organisation Nein, which created Enter through the Void / Exit through the Gift Shop in 2020, an international art festival with performances, lectures and films. The partners included CAMPO, Kunsthal Ghent & D e T h e a t e r m a k e r. During the first pandemic lockdown, Nein created a colouring book with 100 artists and organised the Do It At Home festival. He has worked with many organisations over the years, including CAMPO, Kunsthal Ghent, Beursschouwburg, D e T h e a t e r m a k e r, De Studio, Mu.ZEE, Pilar, Gouvernement, De Brakke Grond, Vooruit and Het Entrepot.

In early 2021, he launched the project Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger, which resulted in a film directed by Tobias Jansen and Jelle Hermans, in which classical musicians and pop artists were asked to make a unique composition. In the film, Sigrid Vinks and Peter de Graaf encounter various characters, music and art. The project was a joint initiative by De Serre, Muziekodroom and B-Classic. Mariën will join the organisational team in April.

In his projects, Mariën always strives to make a crossover between different media in his search for alternative presentation forms. His projects are made possible with the help of other organisers, makers, thinkers and performers. Mariën is the glue that holds them all together.



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