VivienneAerts |
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“I sing about water and soap, about roofgardens and musicians that met on a certain moment and time … As pure as it gets, a background in jazz, now trying to find the borders of the style. Intense as never before, it swings, crushes and touches. To find and experience total freedom.”

From the Netherlands, Vivienne Aerts studied on a Fulbright at Berklee College of Music (Boston, USA) where she worked with renowned jazz artists such as Danilo Perez, Joe Lovano and John Patitucci. Since, Vivienne has shared the stage with both national and international Jazz icons such as Lee Konitz, Kenny Werner, Chris Potter, Joe Cohn and Florian Weber. Vivienne released her first album “Roofgarden” in 2009 and her second album “Polaroid” – a snappy Jazz a cappella EP in 2012. Vivienne has been residing in New York City since 2015 where she gave a debut performance at the Blue Note Jazz Club and is currently working on her third album. Besides this she works with Kenny Werner and the Effortless Mastery Institute at Berklee. Together with her husband who is a Pastry Chef she organizes events and performances under the name ChocoJazz. Before moving to America, Vivienne graduated as a jazz/pop choir conductor and got a master degree in Clinical Psychology after which she worked several years as a psychologist, a teacher and a conductor of several choirs besides performing with different bands as a singer.

Her music is available here and on Spotify, iTunes & Amazon.

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“There’s a way of playing safe, there’s a way of using tricks and there’s the way I like to play which is dangerously, where you’re going to take a chance on making mistakes in order to create something you haven’t created before. “
– Dave Brubeck
Awards, prizes & mentions

Fulbright Scholar (2012) / Prins Bernhard Cultuurfonds (2014) / VSB fonds – Dutch study grant (2012)  / Co Verhoog Prize (2011) / Zoetermeer Jazz Award (2010) / Umbria jazz scholarship award (2007) / Book History Jazz Leiden, NL (2008) / Book Pictures Culture-makers (2012) / Picture Book Musicians Leiden (2017)

Played with

Lee Konitz, Florian Weber, Joe Cohn, Kenny Werner, John Patitucci, Ambrose Akinmusire, Chris Potter, Marcus Gilmore, Bob Moses, George Garzone, Dave Gilmore, Ratzo Harris, Danny Walsh, Martijn van Iterson, Jason Lindner.

Electronic with Robin Koerts

Vivienne mixes her original compositions with the electronic inventiveness from Dutch bass player Robin Koerts. Together they are combining jazz, live loops, visuals and soundbites. The efforts of Robin, who is also known from the video-samples of the Wereld Draait Door (a Dutch tv-show), and Vivienne’s vocal jazz songs (with voice, loops, ipad apps and synthesizer) blend together in this new musical concept. Video fragments like youtube drummers, tennis players, didgeridoos, the Simpsons and Wally, with their visuals ánd their sounds, are all part of the compositions.

Voice Psychologist / Coaching

After graduating my Masters in Clinical Psychology at the University of Leiden in the Netherlands in 2010 I decided to work as a therapist and worked in a private practice for several years. Other work would include music therapy at the local mental health institution where I led choirs of people with severe mental health conditions. The most recent projects were at Leiden University where I developed and taught summer courses in ‘Mindful Improvisation’ for musicians and non-musicians. I coach privately at home and online on a limited basis, and occasionally there are workshops. More info:


Currently teach privately at home and online on a limited basis, and occasionally there are workshops. Please reach out for more info.

  • Piano/vocal lessons
  • Jazz / Improvisation
  • Ipad apps, loops and gear
  • Songwriting & recording workshop
  • Mindful singing
  • Mindful improvising
  • Choir, band, highschool workshops
  • Music Business
  • Private counseling
  • Emotion regulation
  • Effortless Mastery
  • Business excellence & advising
  • Leadership & Conducting
Kenny Werner & Effortless Mastery

Effortless Mastery is a book by Kenny Werner for any musician who finds themselves having reached a plateau in their development. Werner, a masterful jazz pianist in his own right, uses his own life story and experiences to explore the barriers to creativity and mastery of music, and in the process reveals that “Mastery is available to everyone,” providing practical, detailed ways to move towards greater confidence and proficiency in any endeavor. Vivienne Aerts has been associated with Kenny and the newly found Berklee Effortless Mastery Institute since 2014 and has been working as a vocalist and psychologist for over 10 years. Her concept Mindful Improvisation felt so close to Werner’s teaching that he decided that she was meant to follow his footsteps and be the first created Effortless Mastery teacher.

ChocoJazz Performance Art

One of the projects Vivienne is involved in is called the ChocoJazz-Canvas with her husband Ted Steinebach, who is a haute cuisine pastry chef with experience at three Michelin-starred restaurant Eleven Madison Park.

“Ted and Vivienne create in the moment, together as a whole: while Ted is making a ‘pastry-painting’, Vivienne is improvising a soundscape to his movements. Using her voice, loops, ipad apps and a synthesizer she creates a full orchestra by herself, resulting in an ever-changing and newly improvised piece. The artwork is only temporarily: it’s made to be eaten, giving the audience an essential role in the performance. Ted gets his inspiration from Jackson Pollock, Willem de Kooning, Karel Appel and other abstract expressionistic painters. Don’t expect only chocolate, but also cake, white wine-gel, elderflower cream, poached strawberries, red-fruit rubber, hibiscus crumble and other out of the box flavors and textures.” >> more info <<

Choir/band conducting & arranging

Since I also got a degree in choir conducting from the Haarlem Conservatory in the Netherlands where I studied with Tijs Krammer, I worked as conductor of several choirs, and even one bigband for over 10 years. Currently I’m just consulting, arranging and conducting upon request.

Example choirs: Leedvermaak – Dutch pop choir / Leidse Sleuteltjes – L’Keys Girls choir / Dames verband – Lady vocal group / Ringvaart Zangers – Shanty Choir / Vocalzz – young jazz choir / NME – Dutch pop choir / Nics Bigband

Business Vivienne has worked with over the years.