Ernest Rombout was born in the Netherlands (1959). After one year as guest student at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague, he studied with Professor Heinz Holliger in Freiburg. In 1984 he concluded his studies there with the rarely awarded Soloist's Diploma cum laude. Subsequently he studied with Nikolaus Harnoncourt and Maurice Bourgue.
In 1983 he made his debut as a soloist at the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam with the oboe concerto by Richard Strauss. Since then, he has enjoyed a busy solo career, appearing all over Europe, the USA and Japan as well as making many recordings.
As a soloist, he has worked with conductors such as Christopher Hogwood, Marc Foster, Ernest Bour, Ed Spanjaard, Jaap van Zweden and Heinz Holliger. with orchestras as the Radio Symphonie Orchester Berlin, The Netherlands Radio Philharmonic Orchestra, The Prague Chamber Orchestra , the Vienna String Soloists and the Nieuw Ensemble Amsterdam. Rombout has made numerous radio, television and CD recordings throughout Europe. In 1990 he made his first tour to the USA with the Mozart oboe concerto.
New works have been created for him by renowned composers such as Luca Francesconi, Claus-Steffen Mahnkopf, David del Puerto, Maurice Weddington, Stefano Bellon, Richard Rijnvos, Seung-Ah Oh, Anthony Cheung, Stefano Pierini and Chikage Imai. He has appeared at various international festivals such as the Biennales in Venice and Munich, the Donaueschinger Musiktage, the Takefu International Music Festival in Japan and the Summerfestivals in Los Angeles and Avignon.
For DECCA he recorded his first solo-CD with oboe concertos by Haydn and Mozart together with the Concertgebouw Chamber Orchestra. In 1998 he was a member of the jury of the International Competition for Oboe in Geneva.
In 1985 he was invited to become Professor of Oboe at the conservatory of Utrecht and since 2007 also at the Conservatoire of Amsterdam. In September 2015 he was appointed univ. professor for oboe at the Musik und Kunst Privatuniversität in Vienna (MUK).
From 2003 till 2008 he was principal oboist in The Netherlands Symphony Orchestra.
In addition to solo playing, Rombout is also a member of the Nieuw Ensemble Amsterdam (Con-temporary music), The Atlas Ensemble (Contemporary music combining instruments and styles from Europe and the Silk Road countries).
He also conducts these ensembles occasionally, as well as larger chamber music projects at both Conservatoires.
Ernest Rombout has also given many master classes in London, Graz (every two years), Lausanne, Lisbon, Moscow, Ostrava, Tashkent and Liechtenstein.