Arie van Beek was born in Rotterdam. He studied percussion instruments and workes first as a percussionist at the Radio orchestras of the Nederlandse Omroep Stichting (NOS). He turned to conducting. His teachers were Edo de Waart and David Porcelijn.
From 1994 through 2010 Arie van Beek was the chief conductor in residence of the Orchestre d'auvergne in France. Since 2011 he is artistic and musical director of the Orchestre de Picardie, France and since september 2013 artistic and musical director of the Orchestre de Chambre de Genève, Switzerland He is permanent conductor of the Doelen Ensemble in Rotterdam, Holland, and conductor in residence of CODARTS, the conservatory in Rotterdam Music conservatory.
Arie van Beek appears regularly as a guest conductor in France with orchestras such as the Orchestre d’Auvergne, the Orchestre Poitou-Charentes, the Orchestre Régional de Cannes Provence Alpes Côte d’Azur, the Orchestre Victor Hugo Franche-Comté, the Orchestre Colonne, the Orchestre de Chambre de Paris, the Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio-France, the Orchestre National de Lyon, the Orchestre Lamoureux, the Orchestre des Champs-Elysées, the Orchestre Lyrique Régional d’Avignon-Provence, the Orchestre des Pays de Savoie, the Orchestre National des Pays de la Loire, the Orchestre Symphonique de Bretagne and the Orchestre des Lauréats du CNSMD de Paris and in Europe with orchestras such as the Rotterdam Philharmonic Orchestra, the Nieuw Ensemble in Amsterdam, the Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra, the Iena Philharmonic Orchestra, the Bohuslav Martinú Philharmonic Orchestra in Zlin, the Sinfonia Varsovia, the Orchestra of the Warsaw Opera, the City Orchestra of Joensuu.
He has a wide concert repertory, starting from baroque time up to the XXIst century. He has a special dedication to music composed today and has premiered works by Jean-Pascal Beintus, Guillaume Connesseon, Suzanne Giraud, Hans Koolmees, Dominique Lemaitre, Kaija Saahario, Aulis Sallinen, André Serre-Milan, Klaas de Vries, Peter-Jan Wagemans, Michael Levinas, Robin de Raaff, Benjamin Ellin, among others.
Besides numerous symphony concerts in 2019/20 he conducted the world premiere of the first opera by Guillaume Connesson, Les bains macabres, at the Théâtre impérial in Compiègne and at the Théâtre de l'Athénée Louis Jouvet in Paris. During the safety crisis in 2020/21, his plans consist in recordings and livestreams with his both orchestras, the Orchestre de Chambre de Genève and the Orchestre de Picardie.
Arie van Beek is Chevalier de l’Ordre des Arts et des Lettres of the French Republic. He has also been awarded the Médaille of the City of Clermont-Ferrand as well as the Elly Ameling-Prize in regognition for his contribution to the artistic accomplishment of the City of Rotterdam. In March 2014 he has been awarded Erasmus Prize of the city of Rotterdam.