FES was founded in 1998, when no-­‐nonsense artist, former architect, clarinettist, saxophonist, keyboard player, composer and producer Peter Vermeersch, wanted to explore new horizons after having convinced music lovers all over the word with Maximalist! and the cult legend band X-­‐legged Sally.

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Vermeersch, who worked with international artists like Josse De Pauw, Wim Vandekeybus, Vincent Bal, Anne Teresa De Keersmaeker, Fred Frith, The Simpletones and Jazzwork from Berlin and wrote music for the Arditti Quartet, Prima La Musica and the Smith Quartet, assembled a pack of inspired and inimitable muscians, forming a big band which has nowadays become much more than just a big band. Peter Vermeersch included, the band now consists of a permanent group of 15 musicians: Stefaan Blancke (trombone), Benjamin Boutreur (alto sax), Berlinde Deman (tuba), Luc Van Lieshout (trumpet), Bart Maris (trumpet), Michel Mast (tenor sax), Marc Meeuwissen (trombone), Kristof Roseeuw (double bass), Bruno Vansina (alt & baritone sax), Peter Vandenberghe (piano & keyboards), Teun Verbruggen (drums & dustbingrooves), Pierre Vervloesem (guitar), Wim Willaert (accordeon & keyboards), Tom Wouters (clarinet, vibraphone
& vocals).

Occasionally this group is completed by guest singer Esther Lybeert. In the past they worked with various guest musicians: Uri Caine, Toots Thielemans, Mike Patton (Fantômas), Jimi Tenor, John Watts and more recently Ernst Reijseger. The music of FES, varying from strictly written sheet music to liberating improvisation, is 95% homemade. Streaks of music of other
composers are used as inspiration, frequently arranged, adapted and integrated into FES compositions, adding a wide range of
atmospheres and styles to the eclectic FES universe. FES, who dares to flirt with other disciplines as theatre and film and owns
the ability to seduce a number of different audiences, from more select jazz listeners to a wild young rock public, is at its best live on stage.

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