Johannes Joseph Hermann Verhulst was a Dutch composer and conductor. As a composer mainly of songs and as administrator of Dutch musical life, his influence during his lifetime was considerable. As a boy, Verhulst sang in a Catholic choir; here he distinguished himself by his gift for music. In his teens, he succeeded in becoming a first violinist in the court chapel of King William I. In 1836, Felix Mendelssohn, who was on holiday in Scheveningen, was shown an overture written by Verhulst, and took him as a pupil; he began studying with Mendelsson in 1838.