Kersters, Willem, Belgian composer and teacher; b. Antwerp, Feb. 9, 1929. He studied at the Royal Flemish Cons, of Music in Antwerp, and with Louël (counterpoint), Absil and Quinet (fugue), Poot (composition), and Defossez (conducting) at the Royal Cons, of Music in Brussels. From 1962 to 1994 he taught at the Royal Flemish Cons, of Music. He also taught at the Maastricht Cons, in the Netherlands from 1967 to 1994. In his music, Kersters has made imaginative use of both tonal and atonal resources.
dramatic:Opera: Gansendonk (1979-82; Antwerp, Sept. 29, 1984). Ballet: Parwati (1956); Triomfvan de Geest (1959); Halewyn (1973; Brussels, Jan. 25, 1974); Ulenspie-gel de Geus (1975–76).orch.: Concertino for Oboe and Strings (1953); Sinfonietta for Chamber Orch. (1955); Sinfonia concertante for Flute, Clarinet, Bassoon, and Strings (1957); Sinfonia piccola (1958); Divertimento for Strings (1958); 5 syms. (1962; 1963; 1967; Gezelle, 1979; 1987); Plechtige Overture (1963); Sinfonietta for Wind Orch. (1967); Anaglyphos for Percussion Orch. (1969); Capriccio (1972); Serenade for Chamber Orch. (1976); Piano Concerto (1977); Valerius, overture for Wind Orch. (1983); Incantations for Brass Band (1983); Violin Concerto (1989).chamber: Wind Quintet (1954); Viola Sonata (1954); Partita for Violin and Piano (1956); 2 string quartets (1962, 1964); Concert Music for Strings, Piano, Percussion, and Timpani (1964); Suite for Clarinet and Strings (1964); Sonata for Solo Violin (1965); De drie tamboers, septet for 4 Clarinets, Percussion, Timpani, and Piano (1966); Variations on a Theme of Giles Farnaby for 4 Clarinets (1967); Meditation on the Name of BACH for Trumpet, Piano, and Strings (1968); 3 Rondos for Brass Quintet (1969); Contrasts for Percussion and Piano (1969); Quartet for Violin, Viola, Cello, and Piano (1970); Quartet for Clarinet, Violin, Viola, and Cello (1971); Laudes for Brass and Percussion (1973); Diagram for Violin and Cello (1974); Coincidences for 9 Percussionists (1974); Aveniana for Oboe, Clarinet, and Bassoon (1984); Nonetto for 9 Instruments (1985); Ballade for Alto Saxophone and Strings (1987); Sextet for Piano and Strings (1990); Idyll for Harp and Strings (1992); Violin Sonata (1993).keyboard: Piano pieces, including a sonata (1985); organ music.vocal:De geestelikje bruiloft for Soprano, English Horn, Clarinet, Piano, and String Quintet (1955); La chanson d’Eve for Soprano and String Quartet (1959); Psalms for Alto, Men’s Chorus, Winds, Organ, and Timpani (1962); A Gospel Song for 4 Soloists, Chorus, and Orch. (1965); A Hymn of Praise, oratorio for Soloists, Chorus, and Orch. (1966); Barbaarse dans for Soloists, Chorus, and Instrumental Ensemble (1970); Angs-t…een dans for Tenor, Reciter, Chorus, Harp, Piano, and Percussion Orch. (1970); Kinderwereld for Choruses and Orch. (1988); De Feesten van Angst en Pijn for Tenor, Alto, Reciter, Chorus, Harp, Piano, Percussion, and Strings (1995).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire