Astria Oboe Trio was founded by Yf Bourry in 2009. Eric Speller and Dimitri Mestdag joined from the very beginning. They have been seeking creative arrangements and cross-overs from the outset, including theatre and video art. Contemporary music is quite often composed for them on such occasions. They have performed on international stages in France, Bulgary, Estonia and China.
With Korneel Alsteens embarking in 2020 Astria Oboe Trio expanded towards a broader artists collective.
Korneel Alsteens obtained a master in oboe at the Koninklijk Conservatorium of Antwerp under the lead of Joris Van den Hauwe. He attended multiple master classes, among others with Eric Speller, Dimitri Mestdag, Dominik Wollenweber and François Leleux. He played in several youth orchestras, including the Young Janáček Philharmonic and the European Youth Orchestra, with which he travelled through Europe.
He has been Principal Oboist in the Symfonieorkest Vlaanderen since 2004..
Also as regards chamber music Korneel is very active, in e.g. I Solisti, the Spectra ensemble and the Collectief.
He is a teacher at the academies of Overijse, Oud-Heverlee, Hamme and the arts schools of Brussels and Antwerp.
Korneel plays an oboe of Buffet Crampon.
Yf Bourry obtained a higher degree in oboe in the class of Paul Dombrecht at the Koninklijk Conservatorium in Brussels, a higher degree in chamber music with Louis Gillis at the Koninklijk Conservatorium in Antwerp and the degree executive musician at the Rotterdams Conservatorium with Thomas Indermühle and Emanuel Abbühl. Hij specialized with the inspring Jean-Christophe Gayot in Parijs (Radio France), who trained him to be an oboïst and a pedagogue.
He was solo oboist in the West-Vlaams Orkest, het Nieuw Vlaams Symfonie Orkest en het Symfonieorkest van Vlaanderen from 1980 to 2000. He was an oboist with the Beethoven Akademie between 2000 and 2007. He worked freelance for multiple orchestras and ensembles including Brussels Chamber Orchestra and I Fiamminghi and joined these orchestras on tours through Europe, USA and Japan.
Ever so passionate when music is concerned he remains an active musician als an oboist (e.g. Cascophil, European Philharmonia, Kamerorkest van Vlaanderen). Yf is also an enthusiastic chamber musician in the wind quintet Quintessens.
He is a teacher of oboe, oboe d’amore, English horn and music ensemble at the academies of Menen, Kortrijk, Harelbeke and the arts school of Gent. Drive and perfection are his hallmarks.
He has trained several pupils to be finalists and prize winners in national (Vlamo, Belfius) and international competitions (Luxembourg Art Prize and Concours Léopold Bellan in Paris). He has also coached several pupils to become professional oboists.
Dimitri Mestdag studied at the music academy of Harelbeke and the arts school of Gent under the lead of Yf Bourry. He obtained master degrees in oboe, English horn and chamber music at the conservatory of Brussels with Paul Dombrecht and Alex Van Beveren.
After master classes with Thomas Indermühle, David Walter, Alain Denis and Ingo Goritzki he completed his training at the Rotterdams Conservatorium with Emanuel Abbühl.
Dimitri was prize winner of Belfius Classics in 1991 and in 1996 the very first Tenuto laureate on English horn.
As of September 1996 he has been Principal English Horn of the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra.
He has inspired many composers to for his favourite instrument, among others Frits Celis, Erik Desimpelaere, Kalevi Aho, Robert Groslot and Geoffrey Gordon.
Dimitri leads a successful English horn class at the Koninklijk Conservatorium of Brussels and is regularly invited to give masterclasses in Belgium and abroad.
The French oboist Eric Speller studied at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique of Lyon in the class of Jean-Christophe Gayot and Guy Laroche, and won the first prize oboe with honour and special mention of the jury in 1994.
In 1994 Eric won the international oboe competition UFAM in Paris and was admitted to the class of Maurice Bourgue at the conservatory of Geneva subsequently where he obtained the Prix de Perfectionnement in 1995. Between 1995 and 1997 he was co-solist with the Orchestre Philharmonique de Monte-Carlo, and since 1997 he has been Principal Oboe of the Antwerp Symphony Orchestra.
Eric is also a laureate of the foundation Natexis Banques Populaires, was finalist and laureate of the international oboe competition in Prague (1996), and third prize winner of the international oboe competition in Tokio in 1997.
He regularly performs as solist and a chamber musician in Europe, Japan, China, Korea and Latin America and has featured in recordings for Klara, France Musiques, Arte and Mezzo.
As of 2011 he has been a professor oboe at the Koninklijk Conservatorium of Brussels.
Eric produced his first solo album in 1999, dedicating it to the work for oboe of Robert Schumann. During the summer of 2001 he he released a second CD with the complete works for oboe of Benjamin Britten. In 2003 he recorded the oeuvre of Antal Dorati together with the solo sonate for oboe of Heinz Holliger. His latest album is dedicated to romantic music for oboe and piano (2011).
Eric Speller is an ambassador for Buffet Crampon.