Nina Smeets

When NINA SMEETS makes music, she fully expresses the feelings coming from her heart and soul. She combines a fresh, delicate, and clear sound with a full range of musical colors. Her ability to mesmerize the audience with pure, sincere, and touching performances makes her an artist of unconditional value.

Smeets devotes herself fully to music. She’s not only a performer, but also a passionate composer. After the release of her solo piano book and album, Project Reborn, Smeets’s music was nominated for an award in 2016.

“Nina Smeets may caress the keys with unrivaled dexterity, but it’s her underlying compositional instincts that leave us breathless with an appreciation for Project Reborn” — Akademia Music Awards

Smeets is living proof that rebirth is always possible. Being the daughter of internationally renowned pianist Eliane Rodrigues, Smeets always had an intimate relationship with music. At the age of three, she experienced a tragic accident from which she stayed in a coma for several weeks, causing doctors to lose hope. Miraculously, she regained consciousness after repeatedly listening to Mozart’s 12th piano concerto.

As a child, Smeets was always attracted to music; Her dream was to become a pianist. Smeets followed this dream and graduated from the Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp under Levente Kende. After earning her master’s degree, she made her debut with her mother, playing together as a piano duo. Smeets has performed in many concerts all across Europe, appearing in numerous international festivals such as Música Romântica, Meister Interpreten, Arte Amanti, and Festival van Vlaanderen Basilika.

Smeets has shared the stage with many artists such as Yuri Serov, Lidia Kovalenko, Gavriel Lipkind, Dana and Mikhail Zemtsov, Stephanie Proot, Luc Tooten, Hendrickje Van Kerckhove, Avi Avital, Dimitris Spouras, Carlo Willems, Koen Wilmaers, Mathieu Van Bellen, and many others. She was featured as the soloist with orchestras such as the Antwerpen Camerata, VSO Orchestra, and the Lithuanian National Symphony Orchestra.

Inspired to share her love for music with the next generation, Smeets started a project for children with her partner, Gabriel Ferraz in 2017. Smeets wrote a fun, educational book for toddlers named “Het grote muziekspel,” with hopes to connect young children with the basic principles of music in a playful way. Their charity work, “Hart Vol Muziek” had its official launch at the ZNA Koningin Paola Kinderziekenhuis in Antwerp. Together with Eliane Rodrigues, they put on wonderful shows for sick children at hospitals and schools, where each child received a copy of her book. Over 4,000 children have attended their musical project since its start.

In 2019, the album THE GERSHWIN AND BERNSTEIN CONNECTION was released under Navona Records. This album — a musical collaboration between pianists Nina Smeets and Eliane Rodrigues, and percussionists Carlo Willems and Koen Wilmaers — presents timeless music from George Gershwin and Leonard Bernstein.
“An extremely well thought out record that rewrites some of the most timeless work from the seminal composers. While Rodrigues and Smeets handle the piano with unimaginable talent, the percussion from Carlo Willems and Koen Wilmaers truly sets this apart in the field of classical music, making for an engaging, and absorbing effort.” — Take Effect Review



Release Date: November 12, 2021
Catalog Number: NV6382
Inspired by a transcription by composer Franz Liszt, GÖTTERFUNKEN employs the duality of two grand pianos to reimagine and reinterpret Beethoven’s revered Ninth Symphony. As mother and daughter, pianists Eliane Rodrigues and Nina Smeets infuse their own personal flair with Rodrigues’s arrangement, following the path Beethoven paved while connecting his work to the present day with small instances of improvisation throughout that reflect his original stylistic preferences. Conceptualized in the age of social distancing, GÖTTERFUNKEN was arranged not only to reunite Rodrigues and Smeets through music, but the world as a whole with Beethoven’s magnum opus.

The Gershwin & Bernstein Connection

Release Date: May 24, 2019
Catalog Number: NV6230
20th Century
Piano virtuoso Eliane Rodrigues returns with her latest Navona Records release — THE GERSHWIN & BERNSTEIN CONNECTION, a new look at timeless pieces by legendary American composers. Together with talented artists including her daughter, pianist Nina Smeets, Rodrigues thrills audiences once again with her moving and truly spellbinding performances.