Tom Pauwels


Guitarist, Artistic Advisor

Tom Pauwels (Bornem, Belgium, 1974) studied classical guitar in Brussels, Köln and Münster with Albert Sundermann, Hubert Käppel and Reinbert Evers respectively.
In 1995, during his studies at the Brussels Conservatory, he was involved in the founding of Black Jackets Company, a Brussels collective of composers and performers. Ever since these early experiments he has been active in the field of contemporary music, both on classical and electric guitar. From 1999 until 2001 he was a regular member of Champ D’Action, the Antwerp-based ensemble for experimental music. From 2002 to 2016 he has worked as a co-artistic leader for the new music ensemble ICTUS (Brussels). Project-wise, he performs with the Anglo-Belgian octet Plus-Minus, ‘Elastic 3’ and Letter Piece Company. He has recorded works by Craenen, Lachenmann, Shlomowitz, Van Eycken and for Cyprès (Ictus) works by Oehring, Harada, Romitelli and Aperghis.

After a five year research project on new music for guitar he became a ‘Laureate of the Orpheus Institute’ with the thesis ‘De Echo van ‘t Saluut’. Since 2002 he has been in charge of teaching new music for guitar at the Conservatory of Gent where he has developed an advanced master program with emphasis on contemporary chamber music in collaboration with the Spectra ensemble and Ictus. This program is designed for musicians wishing to combine further specialization in performing contemporary solo & chamber music with developing their professional career (more info HERE). Since 2010 is teaching guitar at the International Summer Course for New Music in Darmstadt.

His broad interest in performance has recently led to collaborations with choreographers as Xavier Le Roy (see ‘Mouvements für Lachenmann), Maud Le Pladec (see ‘Professor’ and 'Poetry') and Andros Zins-Browne (The Funerals)

Tom Pauwels (Bornem, België 1974) studeerde klassieke gitaar in Brussel, Keulen en Münster bij respectievelijk Albert Sundermann, Hubert Käppel en Reinbert Evers.

In 1995, nog tijdens zijn studies aan het Brusselse Conservatorium, stond hij samen met vier componisten en vijf uitvoerders aan de wieg van Black Jackets Company. Sindsdien was hij ononderbroken actief in het uitvoeren van nieuwe muziek, zowel op klassieke als elektrische gitaar. Zo was hij van 1999 tot 2001 vast verbonden met Champ D'Action, het Antwerpse ensemble voor experimentele muziek. Van 2002 tot 2016 werkt hij als co-artistiek adviseur voor het Ictus ensemble (Brussel) en werkt hij op projectmatige basis met Champ d'Action, het Brussels-Londense collectief Plus-Minus, Elastic 3 en Letter Piece Company.
Hij nam solo-en ensemblewerk op van Craenen, Lachenmann, Shlomowitz, Van Eycken en voor het Cyprès label (Ictus) werk van Oehring, Harada, Romitelli en Aperghis.

In januari 2004 werd hij, na een vijf-jarige onderzoeksproject, laureaat van het Orpheus instituut met de scriptie 'De Echo van 't Saluut' (promotor Jan Michiels). Sinds het academiejaar 2002 doceert hij uitsluitend nieuwe muziek aan het Conservatorium van Gent waar hij samen met Ictus en het Gentse Spectra ensemble een Advanced Master heeft opgericht. Deze opleiding is bestemd voor jonge professionele muzikanten en ensembles die zich willen vervolmaken hedendaagse kamermuziek. Meer info hier. Sinds juli 2010 doceert hij gitaar aan de Internationale Ferienkurse für Neue Musik Darmstadt.

Zijn brede interesse in performance heeft geleid tot voorstellingen met choreografen als Xavier Le Roy (zie ‘Mouvements für Lachenmann), Maud Le Pladec (zie ‘Professor’ en 'Poetry') en Andros Zins-Browne (The Funerals)

Tom Pauwels (Bornem, Belgique 1974) a étudié la guitare avec Dirk De Hertogh à l'académie de Bornem, puis avec Albert Sunderman au Conservatoire Royal de Bruxelles, où il obtient son Master Degree de guitare classique avec excellence. Dans le cadre du programme Socrate, il se perfectionne pendant un an à la Musikhochschule de Cologne avec Hubert Käppel, puis à la Musikhochschule de Munster avec Reinbert Evers.
Il rejoint en 1995 le 'Black Jackets Company', un collectif expérimental de musique contemporaine composé de quatre compositeurs et de cinq interprètes. Il n'a depuis lors pas cessé de pratiquer la musique contemporaine, aussi bien à la guitare classique qu'à la guitare électrique. Une thèse au sujet du répertoire contemporain pour guitare lui vaut d'être lauréat de l'Institut Orpheus, avec Jan michiels en directeur de thèse.
De 1999 à 2001 il collabore à Champ D'Action, ensemble expérimental anversois ; de 2002 à 2016, co-responsable artistique d'Ictus ; en free lance, collabore avec le collectif belgo-anglais Plus Minus.
Il a personnellement travaillé avec des compositeurs comme Helmut Oehring, Kaaija Saariaho, Fausto Romitelli, David Helbich, Helmut Lachenmann, Francesco Filidei, Georges Aperghis….
Il enseigne la guitare au Conservatoire Royal de Gand (Belgique) depuis 2000. Aujourd'hui, il y enseigne exclusivement la musique contemporaine.
Son intérêt pour les arts de la scène l'ont mené à collaborer avec les chorégraphes Xavier Le Roy ("Mouvements für Lachenmann"), Maud Le Pladec (‘Professor’ et 'Poetry') et Andros Zins-Browne (The Funerals)

Projects tagged with [Tom Pauwels]

Sound & Body

Six Ictus Fellows have decided to take up the challenge of giving a concert without musical instruments.

2 articles

This Is Not A Pop Song (II)

Edition II : Fafchamps, Reiter, Aperghis, Bauer/Peck, Schubert, De La Fuente

2 events & 1 article

The Funerals

PARTS & GAME - The Funerals

2 events

Liquid Room V (Subtilior)

A Liquid Room on 4 stages with guest performers of medieval music, and two premieres by Yeznikian and Guiraud

1 event, 3 articles & 1 audiofragment

Michael Levinas : La Métamorphose (opera)

La Métamorphose, opera by Michaël Levinas, based on Franz Kafka, preceded by Je, Tu, Il, a prologue from Valère Novarina

4 articles & 1 audiofragment

ORFEO 14 (Helmut Oehring)

Helmut Oehring, after C. Monteverdi and J. Conrad, to celebrate the 10th anniversary of the reopening of the Opera de Lille

1 event

CERCLES (in San Fedele, Milano)

Music & Video in Centro Culturale San Fedele, Milano

1 event


a cantata written by Oscar Bianchi for vocal ensemble, instrumental ensemble, 3 soloists and electronics

2 articles & 1 audiofragment


François Sarhan's pop evening

3 articles & 1 audiofragment

Telegrams from the Nose

François Sarhan, William Kentridge, Daniil Harms

1 article

Avis de Tempête (Aperghis | Szendy, 2004)

Music and direction : Georges Aperghis. Libretto : Aperghis / Szendy after Melville & ...

1 article & 1 audiofragment

Riccardo Nova : Drones (2001)

Carnatic rhythms and electric orkestra

1 audiofragment

Waits | Weill

T. Waits : songs from The Black Rider & Frank’s Wild Years | K. Weill : songs from Mahagonny, Dreigroschen Opera, Lady in the Dark

3 articles


A music theatre performance on three platforms, by François Sarhan

1 article

Saint John ( Liquid Room for John Cage)

4 hours and 33 seconds

2 articles

Liquid Room I

Contemporary music, but a way of listening to it as though at a rock festival or an electronic improvisation night, on 4 stages.

Liquid Room II

12 muzikanten spelen meer dan 15 composities op 5 verschillende podia in één ruimte en dat alles non-stop en op één avond.

Liquid Room III : Darmstadt 2012

A seamless evening on three stages, related to the past and present of the Internationale Ferienkurse für Neue Musik of Darmstadt

This is Not a Pop Song (I), 2012

Premiere van een performance project van Ictus rond een ‘band’-bezetting.

1 article

A History of Synchronicity (Liquid Room IV)

Ballet Mekanique (for all audiences)

Do it yourself !

5 events & 1 article

Les Zébrides

Happy day in Opéra de Lille

1 event

Concrete (Maud Le Pladec | Michael Gordon)

Music, dance, light

8 events

American Lament (Ensemble Version)

Finn, Van Der Aa, Ictus

2 events & 1 article


By Eleanor Bauer & Chris Peck / GoodMove & Ictus

5 events

Focus on Eva Reiter

Open Music, Graz (Austria)

1 event

Ghost Notes

Ghost Notes moves between concert and choreography : for one cellist, a drummer, 2 dancers and a public.

3 events

Sound & Vision (a liquid room)

Music and visual performance : preoccupation of an entire generation, for whom the musical moves between the eye and the ear.

4 events, 1 article & 2 audiofragments

Donaueschingen : 4 premieres

Martin Schüttler, Hanna Eimermacher, Francesca Verunelli, James Saunders

1 event

Short Is The Night (Saint Johns' Eve)


1 event

Liquid Room VIII : PHRASES

Sound poetry, spoken word, modal music and a touch of animal virtuosity.

1 event

A Rainbow in curved air

1 event

Watch & listen to [Tom Pauwels]

Fausto Romitelli : Professor Bad Trip

“Like a Sonic Youth version of Bach” — (De Standaard, Maarten Beirens)

1 soundcloud track
1 video

Helmut Oehring | Iris Ter Schiphorst : Prae Senz

Oehring/Ter Schiphorst : Prae Senz, Ballet Blanc II

1 soundcloud track

PROFESSOR (Maud Le Pladec / Fausto Romitelli _ with live music)

Maud Le Placec & Ictus in Marseille, May 2012. Festival Les Musiques.

1 soundcloud track
1 video

François Sarhan : Pop Up

3 excerpts from "L'Nfer, un petit détail" (CD "Pop Up", MFA 2012)

1 soundcloud track

Michael Levinas: La Métamorphose

Michaël Levinas, after Franz Kafka. AEON 2012.

2 videos


Liesa Van der Aa & Tom Pauwels.

1 soundcloud track

Fredy Vallejos : Cercles 2

Fredy Vallejos, from the multimedia performance CERCLES, San Fedele Center, Milano

1 soundcloud track

Sound & Vision (teaser)

A Liquid Room. Kaaitheater, April 2017

1 video

Blogposts tagged with [Tom Pauwels]