Violist (or ‘Violinist’ in Dutch) is a book by and about Marc Daniel van Biemen, a member of the Concertgebouw Orchestra’s first violin section, and was published by Thomas Rap on 25 May. The work provides a unique insight into the world of classical music.

For most musicians, joining the ranks of the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra is but a dream. But Marc Daniel van Biemen managed to secure a place in the first violin section of one of the world’s most acclaimed orchestras at the age of twenty-four. Together with colleagues, he also founded the adventurous and successful Alma Quartet.

With Violist, he ushers readers into the world of classical music. Why is the string quartet thought of as the holy grail? What makes a conductor so successful at their job? What’s life on the road like? Nor does he shy away from the darker side of being a musician. In moving and poignant passages, Marc Daniel paints an intimate portrait of his complicated childhood as the son of a stern, passionate and alcoholic father.

All this makes Violist a compelling narrative about the life of a young musician in the Concertgebouw Orchestra.

Violist can be purchased at the Friends Desk at the Concertgebouw, in bookshops and online for €23.99 (paperback) or €12.99 (e-book).