Emmanuelle SOMER got the European Baccalaureate at age 17, speaking fluently French, English and Dutch, and well German.
As a teenager, she played piano, recorder flute, oboe, drums and alto sax.
Emmanuelle studied 4 years (1989-1993) at Brussels Music Conservatory, oboe with Paul DOMBRECHT (other teachers were Joris VAN DEN HAUWE, Henk SWINNEN) and got diplomas of solfege, English horn and chamber music. She also studied collective improvisation with Fabrizio CASSOL and Michel MASSOT, and attended masterclasses with Thomas INDERM1Uuml;HLE, Emanuel ABBUHL, Diethelm JONAS and Raphael PALACIOS.
Then she received a full scholarship for studying 3 years at Boston's Berklee College of Music (Herb Pomeroy, Ed TOMASSI, Hal CROOK, George GARZONE, Phil WILSONS, Ken PULLIG, Bill PIERCE, Greg BADOLATO, Eric REASONER) where she studied jazz improvisation (on the oboe !) and composition, as well as film scoring.
She graduated Magna Cum Laude in 1996.
She also got the 1995 Berklee Annual Wind Ensemble Concerto Composition Award.
Emmanuelle SOMER is consolidating her knowledge in composition and free improvisation with Garrett LIST and Frederic RJEWSKI.
Emmanuelle's musical experiences include:
She played in US with Christopher HOLLIDAY, Bill VINT, Bruno RABERG, John THOMAS, Fabian BAUSCH, Rick MCLAUGHLIN a.o.
- Concerts with the New England Philharmonic
- The Spoleto Festival Orchestra
- Under direction of Gilbert VARGA, Ronald ZOLMAN, Spiros ARGIRIS
- Soloist (HOLLIGER's Studie über Mehrklänge, BERIO's Sequenza VII, MARTINU's Oboe Concerto, improvisations...)
- Chamber music concerts
- Competitions and festivals
- Collective improvisation performances
- 500 studio hours
- 5 CD recordings as sidewoman
- Composition and directing of 2 short film scores
- European jazz tours
- French Chanson
In Europe with Pierre VAN DORMAEL, Jean-Louis RASSINFOSSE, AKA MOON musicians, Steve HOUBEN, Dré PALLEMAERTS, Renaud BARBIER, Kris DEFOORT's DREAMTIME etc...
Emmanuelle is the leader of the HELIOS Quartet, which plays her own compositions in a mixed style of modern jazz, avant-garde and odd meters, and of a new group including Michel MASSOT, Shander SARDJOE and Marco PUNTIN. She performs regularly in jazz, classical and contemporary music, from solo to big ensembles.
also co-leads the SOMER-MANGEN Quartet with piano/keyboard player Marc MANGEN, bassist Lindsey HORNER and drummer Jarrod CAGWIN.
Thanks to such a richness of influences, Emmanuelle's original style in both performance and composition is distinctive and continually evolving, enabling her to perform almost any kind of music eloquently.
In June '98, Emmanuelle SOMER released her first CD, "THE APPLE TREE".
In '98, Emmanuelle SOMER was elected best Belgian player of "miscellaneous instruments" of the year '98, both in the listeners poll (RTBF/VRT) and the Belgian critics poll (French speaking).
In January 2001, her album "Odyssey" came out, with the SOMER-MANGEN Quartet.
In May 2001, her new CD "Search for Peace" was released, with the Helios Quartet, Tone Poets and guests.
Emmanuelle SOMER has her own WEB SITE, which offers, in English and French : biography, discography, infos on her bands, photos, music samples and more. You can also order her albums via the site.