Raymond Schroyens was born in Mechelen, Belgium in 1933. He obtained a Master of Music Degree at Mechelen’s Lemmens Institute in1954. In 1958, he achieved a Master’s Degree in organ with the renowned Flor Peeters at the Royal Flemish Conservatoire of Music in Antwerp.
This took him to the USA to become Director of Church Music in Dearborn, Detroit, Michigan. After moving back to Belgium in 1960, Raymond became Chief Music Producer at the BRT Brussels, Classical Music Radio 3 and Head of Department Programming and Studio Recording (1963–1993). From 1971, he combined these positions with a post as harpsichord teacher at the Brussels Royal Conservatoire of Music, and at the Music Academy of his native town. He retired in 1993 and moved to Ghent where he still lives.
As a performer, he played a number of organ and harpsichord concerts, as a soloist and in instrumental groups. He recorded several productions for the BBC. Nonetheless he kept close to his first love: piano accompaniment in Lied performance. In 1967, he was awarded an official prize in this field at an International Contest sponsored by the Bulgarian State.
The composer also writes poetry and articles on various subjects. This, however, does not interfere with his delight in Music which – in the wake of absolute priority for his American wife and first lady – he still considers as his second spouse. Raymond mainly composes choral music, but also instrumental and vocal solo pieces and chamber music.
Ann De Renais is a light dramatic coloratura soprano with a warm middle voice. She holds a Post-Graduate Vocal Training diploma and the Certificate of Techniques of Teaching from Guildhall School of Music and Drama, London, a Bachelor Degree of Singing LUCA-Arts, a Diploma of First Prize Piano, a Diploma of First Prize Solfege and a Pedagogical Degree of Teaching Piano from the Royal Conservatoire of Music in Brussels.
She has been studying the Swedish-Italian School of Singing Technique with David Jones in NYC since 1996, Acting with Geraldine Baron (Method Acting) in NYC and at The Knack with English National Opera, London. She became associate singing teacher of David Jones in 2002 and organises his London/Cambridge Master Classes since.
Since 2012, Ann has been teaching choral scholars of the Trinity Chapel Choir conducted by Stephen Layton at the University of Cambridge as well as private students in London, and abroad.
Her singing career has led her to perform a wide variety of styles ranging from baroque, romantic and belcanto opera repertoire to contemporary classical music as well as recording for over 200 Hollywood film sound tracks and backing vocals for pop and jazz artists. Her solo recordings range from songs in her native Flemish to French and German song and oratorio premieres as well as light jazz and easy-listening.
Her touring experience includes the Swingle Singers from 1998-2001 and Lord of the Rings Soloist from 2007-2012, as well as collaborating with many orchestras worldwide.
Daniël Schroyens, born in 1961 in Mechelen, Belgium, received early training in piano, harpsichord and chamber music at his local Music Academy, and had private composition tuition with Wilfried Westerlinck. He subsequently studied at Trinity College of Music, London (1979-84) – piano with Joseph Weingarten, composition with Antonin Tučapsky – and upon graduating attended the 1984 Berkshire Music Center, Tanglewood, Mass. as a Fellow in Composition, where his tutors included John Harbison, Theodore Antoniou and Gunther Schuller; this experience steered him toward a compositional career.
After a brief period back in Belgium, in which he gained diplomas in various academic subjects at Brussels and Ghent Conservatoires, he settled in London permanently from 1986. Here he rounded off his compositional education with a post-graduate course at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, studying with Simon Bainbridge and Robert Saxton (‘91-93).
He has enjoyed broadcasts of his works on Belgian Radio and was recipient of several awards, such as the Yehudi Menuhin and Lutoslawski Prizes (U.K.) and the Tenuto Prize (Belgian Radio and Television).
Daniël Schroyens lectured in the Music Studies department at GSMD, London from 1999 to 2009 and taught harmony, counterpoint and tonal composition at Clare, Christ’s and St Catharine’s Colleges, Cambridge, from 2007 to 2011. He currently teaches piano and composition privately.