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Frank van Essen

Drums, percussion, violin, vocals

IONA, Barbara Dickson, Within Temptation (strings), Strings Attached


“Frank Van Essen has worked with me on all my recent albums and his string playing is matchless. He is my musician of choice for violin and viola parts. I loved Frank's playing the instant I heard it and now I too, am a fan.” Barbara Dickson (Recording Artist, Actress)


“Van Essen's drums becoming the thunder of celestial hoof-beats.... stunning violin on ʻLuke – The Calf,ʼ and ʻRuach.ʼ”


Son of a Dutch classical composer, Frank commenced violin studies at the age of seven, taking up drums at 15. Within three years he was playing with several big name Dutch and US artists including Rick Cua, Margaret Becker, Jesse Dixon, Julie Miller, Susan Ashton, Billy and Sarah Gaines, Marcel McArthur and Ralph van Mannen. Frank also toured extensively with singer-songwriter Adrian Snell, in productions also featuring his wife, dancer and singer Marlou.


He is now established in The Netherlands as a much in demand producer and string arranger in his own right for various Dutch and international artists (including Armin van Buuren, Within Temptation, Trinity) and composer for TV programmes and short films. Franks strings could recently be heard during the closing ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics! A member of Iona in the very early days of the band, soon after the release of the first album, Frank re-joined in 1998 after the departure of Terl Bryant. 

Current live set up:

DRUMS: Sonor drums, Zildjian cymbals, various percussion 



Interesting Facts:

Frank and his wife Marlou have 9 cats, 1 dog and several goats and chickens, and yes, Dutchman Frank does sometimes wear wooden clogs!

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