He is the Artistic Director of the Orlando Festival & Competition since 2014. Per December 1st 2015 he was appointed General Director / Artistic Director of the Foundation Chamber Music Limburg, responsible for the organisation of the Orlando Festival.
Henk Guittart (b.1953) studied viola with Jürgen Kussmaul and orchestral conducting with Louis Stotijn in The Hague, The Netherlands. In 1974 he founded the Schoenberg Ensemble, of which he was the violist and artistic director until 1991. During 33 years, from its founding in 1976 until the end of the quartet’s existence in 2009, he has been the violist of the Schoenberg Quartet.
During the 37 years of his life on stage as a violist Henk Guittart gave many world premières (including works by Schoenberg and Zemlinsky which he rediscovered) and collaborated with many composers, such as Louis Andriessen, Jonathan Berger, Luigi Dallapiccola, Jonathan Dove, Berthold Goldschmidt, Sofia Gubaidulina, Maurizio Kagel, Otto Ketting, Igor Markevitch, Luigi Nono, Fredric Rzewski, Alfred Schnittke, Valentin Silvestrov and Isang Yun.
Henk Guittart is a passionate teacher and coach who has worked from 1978 until 2019 as chamber music coach and conductor at various Dutch Conservatoires. He was guest conductor and guest professor at the music academies in Budapest, Princeton, Los Angeles (USC), Dresden, The Hague, Amsterdam, Cologne, Moscow (Tchaikovsky Conservatory), Manchester, London (Guildhall) and Stanford.
From 2010 until 2013 Henk Guittart was Artistic Director of Music Programs, Fall& Winter at The Banff Centre for the Arts, where he led three highly praised and very successful years, after having served since the fall of 2006 as artistic advisor of music programs and as special guest faculty during fall, winter, and summer programs. At the Banff Centre he coached countless young artists and ensembles.
In March 2014 Henk Guittart was appointed International Tutor in Strings Performance and Pedagogy at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester, United Kingdom.
In September 2014 he accepted the post of Artistic Director of the Orlando Festival, an international chamber music festival which takes place in the summer in the south of The Netherlands.
As a conductor Henk Guittart has a wide range of repertoire, from the Viennese classics, and many works from the Second Viennese School, to brand-new music, including music-theatre and opera. As a conductor he recorded eight CD’s with works by Kurt Weill, Jonathan Dove, Jonathan Berger, Schoenberg, Webern, Berg, Zemlinsky, Wagner, Bruckner, Debussy, Mahler and Busoni.
In 2011 he founded the Gruppo Montebello, an ‘all-star’ hand-picked international ensemble, with which he performs and records the complete collection of arrangements from the 1920’s by the Viennese Society for Private Musical Performances, often in his own revised versions and including several later arrangements of orchestral music, as well as all major ensemble works by Schoenberg, Berg and Webern, for the prestigious label Etcetera. For the near future performances and recordings of all large ensemble works by Schoenberg, Berg and Webern are being planned.