The Belgian counter-tenor, Steve Dugardin, occupies a remarkable position on the music scene. Beginning his musical studies at the age of 15 with Aimée Thonon, he went on to study singing with Marie-Thérèse Maesen, assistant to Lucienne Van Dijck. He graduated first class in, both, music theory at the Royal Conservatory of Ghent and, subsequently, in singing at the Royal Flemish Conservatory in Antwerp. It was at the latter that he first met Erik Van Nevel who awakened his interest in Early Music. Passionate about his art, Dugardin is currently furthering his studies under the English male alto, Ashley Stafford.
Steve Dugardin's exceptional voice did not go unnoticed for long and he was soon taking part in productions conducted by Sigiswald Kuijken, Jos van Immerseel, Ton Koopman, Gustav Leonhardt, Frans Brüggen and Philippe Herreweghe. He is increasingly in demand as a soloist, working with (among others): the Ricercar Consort, Clemencic Consort, Tragicomedia (Director: Stephen Stubbs), Il Seminario Musicale (Director: Gérard Lesne), Les Arts Florissants (Director: William Christie), Il Fondamento (Director: Paul Dombrecht), Huelgas Ensemble (Paul Van Nevel), Choeur de Chambre de Namur, Currende (Erik Van Nevel), Ex Tempore, La Petite Bande (Director: Sigiswald Kuijken), Musica Antiqua Köln, Das Nederlandse Bachvereniging and the Bach-ensemble (Director: Joshua Rifkin). More recently he has sung with I Fiamminghi (Rudolf Werthen) as well as the Flanders Recorder quartet (Vier op een rij). These collaborations have led to the recording of a number of CD's.
Steve Dugardin already has the requisite stage experience, appearing in operas by Alessandro Scarlatti (with Opera Mobile), George Frideric Handel (with Transparant) and last year in Boston and at the Utrecht Music festival in Cavalli's opera, Ercole Amanti and more recently Akhnaten by Philip Glass where he played the titlerole. In Alain Platel's production Iets op Bach he also came in contact with the dance-scene, and in the theatrical production Gilles (written and directed by Hugo Claus), he shared the stage with Jan Decleir. He has not been inspired solely by Early Music. His passion for Contemporary Music was the stimulus for the creation of the male quartet Touchant, specialising in Close Harmony.
As a lecturer in the Herman Teirlinck Studio and the Royal Conservatory of Music in Liège, Steve Dugardin is passing his skills and experience on to a new generation of artists.