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Bernardo Beirão wins Sabam prize for composition

Beirão graduated from the Royal Conservatoire Antwerp in June 2023 with the highest score for composition. This earned him the Sabam Prize. The young composer received a cheque for €500 from the hands of Sabam representative Mikis Duprez during the jubilee concert for 125 years of the Conservatoire.

Not only Sabam had praise for the Portuguese musician. His teacher Alain Craens also found the recognition more than deserved: "It was an honour to guide Bernardo through his master years. I was able to follow his growth from composer to composer-performer from the front row. At the start of his programme, he was still very much searching for himself as a creator. But look, now I see before me a determined artist who has the power to move you completely with his music, through the emotion and craftsmanship he puts into it." 

Bernardo grew up in Portugal. He studied composition at the Escola Superior de Musica de Lisboa with Luis Tinoco and Sergio Azevedo before coming to Antwerp to study with Wim Henderickx and Alain Craens. In June 2023, he was awarded his master's degree. In September '23, Bernardo started studying music again. This time he is taking the bachelor programme in vocal studies with Gary Jankowski at the Conservatoire of Antwerp. 

Bernardo is extremely happy with the recognition from Sabam: "I consider this award not only as recognition for my musical work, but also as a confirmation of the search for my own identity. That's what I really spent my two master years doing. The prize was presented to me at a very special concert at DE SINGEL. We were there together to celebrate Wim Henderickx's legacy and I was also invited to perform with my ensemble 'Beyond Tradition'. I couldn't have wished for a better occasion. I was overcome by a feeling of joy and pride."