About Robijn Tilanus

Robijn Tilanus is a Dutch improvisation pianist, improvisation coach, author and composer.

When she was seven years old, she started to play the piano. At that same age, she wrote her first compositions. Later on, she took piano lessons from several renowned piano teachers, such as Jan Wijn, Willem Brons and Ramón Valle.  She obtained her degree in piano as well as her masters in Biology.



Robijn Tilanus wrote a book on harmony: ‘The Fifth Factor –  a practical approach to harmony through improvising at the piano, listening, playing, singing, and composing’. The book is on its sixth edition, more than 15,000 copies are sold. A German translation appeared in 2010, an English version has just appeared in August 2017.

She also wrote a book on improvisation: ‘FREE PLAYING – the seven aspects of improvisation, a guide for everybody who wants to learn how to improvise in a free way’. An English translation is on its way and will appear in the autumn of 2018.

Furthermore, she published ‘Again and Again’: a compilation of short, easy compositions for piano solo. It offers invitations to improvise.



Robijn Tilanus regularly performs as an improvisation pianist, at home as well as abroad. She has her own characteristic style, in which you can hear influences of classical music, salsa, new age, pop, jazz, tango and reggae. Apart from the piano, she also plays the viola, violin, alto recorder, djembe, cajon, conga, bongos and marimba.


Improvisation Academy Amsterdam

Robijn Tilanus has given hundreds of workshops, lectures and master classes on improvisation and harmony, in the Netherlands, Belgium, Germany, Great Britain, Portugal, Finland, Czech Republic, Slovenia and Iceland. She is founder of the Improvisation Academy Amsterdam. With her books, workshops and lectures she has inspired thousands of people to start improvising and to grow in it.

Robijn Tilanus lives in Amsterdam, is married and has two adult children.

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