Rudi Tas was born in Alost in 1957. He studied at the Conservatoires of Brussels and Ghent, obtained several certificates for instrumental and theoretical classes, and the final diploma for composition with Roland Coryn. After having been for some time a concert organist and choir director, he now focuses on composing, for solo instruments and for orchestra.

It is quite remarkable how many works by Rudi Tas have been awarded prizes in national and international contests. In 1979 the Nausikaa composition award for vocal music, in 1988 the Flemish Multimedia Centre Award for chamber music, in 1989 the Baron Flor Peeters Prize for organ-composition, in 1992 the Provincial Prize of East Flanders, in 1993 the B.A.P. award of Sabam. In 1992 his ‘Symphonia da Requiem’ was nominated for the European AGEC Prize, and in 1996 he received this important distinction for his choral work ‘Flowers of life’. In May 1998 he ended first at the international contest for composition in Tours (France). In 2001 he received the ‘Jef Van Hoof’-prize for the ‘Sonata for violin and piano.’ In 2013 he has been awarded the ‘Harmonic Originality Prize’ for the piece ‘Pie Jesu’ (SSAATTBB) in the International Composition Competition of IFCM (Chicago, US)

‘The way in which Rudi Tas directs his career is based on deep respect of tradition and solid knowledge of the more recent composing techniques. According to the commission he gets he will choose the more classic or the more contemporary style. In his most important works he fuses these two polar opposites, which was only made possible by a solid professionality and stylistic consciousness.’

This is how Vic Nees characterizes the position of composer Rudi Tas in the musical landscape of Flanders. Respect of traditions, stylistic know-how, pragmatism, economy of means, eclecticism, professionality, the proper balance between emotion and form: all of these notions which by some contemporary musicians, always eager for the newest, will be judged with mild disdain as old-fashioned. Yet, they are chacteristic of the larger part of Rudi Tas’ music, which may be why it is much appreciated by both professionals and amateurs, admired by international juries, and why it can equally move into enthusiasm those who execute, those who judge and those who listen.

Rudi Tas’ music is permeated by influences from the past, from traditional and contemporary musical language; serial and tonal elements are treated apart from each other. His striving to strike a perfect balance between reason and emotion is supported by solid structures and a flexible, expressive but controlled lyricism.

His work is performed byJan Michiels, Luk Vaes (piano), Symfonieorkest van Vlaanderen, VRT-Kamerkoor o.l.v. Vic Nees, Mireille Capelle (sopraan), Ensemble ‘Spiegel’, Musa Horti o.l.v. Peter Dejans, Stijn en Steven Kolacny, Paul Klinck, Johannes Moser, Susan Lamb, Dale Warland Singers (US), Capella Amsterdam (Daniel Reuss), Salt Lake Vocal Artists (Brady Allred) a.o.

© Koen Uvin