Kevin Houben was born in 1977 in Peer, Belgium. Houben discovered his passion for music at a young age, studying piano and trumpet. He obtained a master’s and a teaching degree in trumpet (with Leon Pétré), solfege and chamber music pedagogy (with Leo Ouderits), a master’s in hafabra (Harmony, Fanfare, Brassband – with great distinction) and a master’s in orchestral conducting (with Edmond Saveniers) at the Lemmens Institute in Leuven, Belgium. In addition, he trained in composition (with Jan Van der Roost and Luc Van Hove) and obtained a first prize in harmony and polyphony under Jan Hadermann.
Since the completion of his studies, Houben’s music has become a favourite in the repertoires of various orchestras in Europe, America, Australia and Japan.
He was the winner of the Sabam prize and audience award at the 2nd Concours International de composition pour orchestre in Comines-Warneton in 2003. He also won first prize at the European EBBA competition in 2006 and the third prize and audience award in the 2009 edition.
Since the 2015 edition of the Belgian festival Tomorrowland, Houben worked with the National Orchestra of Belgium as an orchestrator, reworking the Hymn composed by Hans Zimmer especially for the festival. He also wrote the orchestrations for This was Tomorrow, a film about Tomorrowland, performed by the National Orchestra of Belgium at the Sportpaleis (Antwerp, Belgium) in November 2015.
In March 2017, his first symphony premiered at a festival marking the 650th birthday of the city of Peer, where it was performed by the National Orchestra of Belgium, conducted by Dirk Brossé.
Houben is also a renowned conductor, having worked with various professional orchestras and ensembles during recordings and at concerts all over the world. At a masterclass in Prague in 2018 he was chosen to conduct the finale of Beethoven's 9th Symphony. In October 2018, he was musical director with the symphonic orchestra La Passione for the dance performance Le Temps Perdu by top choreographer Isabelle Beernaert in Carré (Amsterdam).
On March 17, his wind band Koninklijke Harmonie Peer won the VLOH 2019 (Flemish Open Wind Band Championship), scoring 93.5%. They will compete for Belgium in the European Championship for Wind Orchestras in 2022 in France.
In June 2019, with a full scholarship offered by WASBE, Kevin followed a specially-designed program at the Los Angeles Conducting Institute (LACI) at Caltech for advanced conductors who seek to perfect their craft. This was under the instruction of renowned conductors H. Robert Reynolds and Dr. Glenn Price.
In 2019 he orchestrated arrangements of Marcel Kaper and Hugo Tromp for artistic director Christophe Van den Branden. Houben also conducted the symphonic orchestra of Tomorrowland in rehearsals of Armin Van Buuren’s piece Shivers, with the original leading vocalist Susana, where he was assisting maestro Dirk Brossé.
Since 2020 Houben teaches Orchestration and Instrumentation at LUCA School Of Arts - Campus Lemmens (Belgium) together with Ivan Meylemans.