The festival started in 1990 as the Daniel Music Days, named after the Daniel Quartet. Zvi Maschkowski, the cellist of the quartet, was one of the festival's founders and its artistic director until 2008. Members of the quartet played at the concerts and gave masterclasses.
Over the years many other ensembles were invited to perform and teach, and the scope of the festival expanded. In 2004 the festival was renamed Zeist Music Days - Chamber Music Festival and Masterclasses.
Since 2009 the artistic leadership has been in the capable hands of Alexander Pavlovsky, first violinist of the world-famous Jerusalem Quartet.
The festival has always received an enthusiastic response from visitors, musicians, students and the press.