Michiel - profile

Michiel Commandeur

2nd violin

When and where was your first concert with the MCO? It was the very first concert – 1997 in Landshut.

What’s the best thing about playing with the MCO? The professional friendship between the musicians and the will to play the best you can that arises from that friendship.

What is your most memorable moment with the orchestra? There is not one single moment – there are so many. But I suppose it was the first 5 years, when slowly the awareness arose that this was for real and could last forever!

Briefly describe what a concert day involves for you. A concert day is special, different from other days, it usually starts with a general rehearsal in the morning, then a nice lunch, a little nap, and after that a freshen up moment and a warm up practice on the violin. One hour before the concert there should be nothing, just time to relax and concentrate.

What CDs would you want with you on a desert island? Maurizio Pollini – Schubert’s Sonata in A minor, Radiohead: OK Computer, Miles Davis: Kind of Blue, and Frank Zappa: Roxy and Elsewhere.


Michiel was born in 1970 in Amsterdam. He began to play violin at the age of six with Astrid Sillem. He started his studies in 1988 at the Sweelinck Conservatorium in Amsterdam with Jaennelotte Hertzberger, Peter Brunt and Davina van Wely. By the time he received his diploma in 1995, he was already playing with the Gustav Mahler Jugendorchester.

In 1997, he became one of the founding members of the Mahler Chamber Orchestra. In addition to playing with the MCO, Michiel is a regular extra player in all the major Dutch orchestras as well as in the Asko/Schönberg Ensemble and the Nieuw Ensemble.

As the son of an actor and a violinist, Michiel is also very drawn to the theatre, which has led to his involvement in several musical theatre productions in the Netherlands.

Michiel is married and has two children, Stan and Suze.