I am Martinus (Mark) Geelen. I was born in 1978 in a little village in the south of holland. As a child I wanted to be an electrician but I ended up studying the modern trumpet at the High School of Music (conservatory) of Maastricht and Utrecht. Later on I studied the Baroque Trumpet at the conservatory of Den Haag.

I received my Masters degree for performing arts and teaching in 2005.

I have worked as trumpet teacher since 1994, teaching all ages. During my master studies in the conservatory of Utrecht I also worked as a teacher, assisting my teacher and mentor Mr. Willem van der Vliet, who is still a great inspiration to me.

I still teach with great pleasure.

As a professional performer I started in the modern scene. I have worked with many ensembles and orchestras, like for example the Ives Ensemble, Schönberg Enemble, Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, Radio Symphony Orchestra, Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, Netherlands Philharmonic Orchestra, etc. Here I had the opportunity to work with great conductors, like Simon Rattle, Ricardo Chailly, Edo de Waart, Bernard Haitink, Thierry Fischer, Eri Klas, Jaap van Zweden, Hartmut Hänchen  and Valery Gergiev.

Later, when I got the hang of playing the natural trumpet, I chose to focus on playing period instruments for a living. From that moment on I have worked with "historic" ensembles like the Dutch Bach Society, Amsterdam Baroque Orchestra, Berliner Baroque Consort, New Philharmony Utrecht, Akademie für Alte Musik, Seoul Baroque Orchestra, Iceland baroque, etc.

I have the honour to work with a very different line of conductors regularly. To name a few: Philippe Herreweghe, Bartold Kuijken, Ton Koopman, Jos van Immerseel, Jos van Veldhoven, Frans Brüggen and Robert Levin. I really enjoy playing in small ensembles. The challenge of mastering the natural trumpet inside and out keeps me awake.

When it comes to playing on period instruments I need good, reliable trumpets. That is the reason for my decision to explore the technical side of these instruments. I had seen and played many good and sometimes unaffordable instruments from all over the world, and I wanted to be able to do my own repairs, and restore romantic instruments, so I decided to start a workshop myself.

I have an apprentice-ship with Mr. Geert-Jan van der Heide, who builds beautiful, historic, fully handmade instruments. I have learned all the basic techniques to produce complete natural trumpets from a single piece of sheet metal. At this moment I am mainly working on restoring, building and modifying natural trumpets, romantic trumpets and custom (rotary) modern trumpets

Because I run my workshop next to performing (and teaching) the trumpet I am in the luxurious position that I can test my own products in the orchestra, and have them judged by first timers (students) as well. Also, I am very fortunate to have a set of great, helpful, colleagues around me in the orchestras. They keep me sharp and help me test and improve my products non stop by being critical and honest. This way my instruments keep getting better and better.

For now this is the point that I am at, and I am enjoying it a lot! The more music, the more fun! And more happy people make more peace.

Martinus Geelen 

© 2019 Martinus Geelen Natural Trumpets