Mark Haanstra is a versatile bass player based in the Netherlands. He started playing classical piano at an early age but switched to bass in his teens after hearing the music of James Brown. Soon after he started his studies at the Conservatory of Amsterdam where he graduated cum laude in 1997.
His recognizable sound, groove and flexibility make him a much sought after musician by artists, ensembles and orchestras in many genres.
Mark won several prizes, including the Dutch Jazz Competition with the Nemesis Quartet (1994), Geel (1998) and Agog (2002).
Last 10 years Mark recorded and played in over 30 countries with artists such as Oene van Geel, Yuri Honing, Simon Phillips, Terry Bozzio, Napoleon Murphy Brock, Theo Loevendie, Jam de la Crème, Windkracht 7, Ellen ten Damme, Tini Thomsen Max Sax (feat. Nigel Hitchcock) and the Barnicle Bill Trio (featuring saxophonist Miguel Martinez and drum legend John Engels).
Mark played with major classical ensembles and orchestras including Concertgebouw Orkest, MDR Sinfonieorchester, Asko Schoenberg, Nieuw Ensemble and many more. Besides this he is a soloist in Steve Mackey’s Grammy Award-winning work Dreamhouse, which has been performed and recorded by several renowned orchestras such as the BBC and New York Philharmonic.
Mark has been teaching at the Prince Claus Conservatoire in Groningen since 2004.