He started his musical studies in Budapest, where playing the recorder and the clarinet.
After finishing music school he continued his clarinet studies in the Bartók Béla Conservatorium (1996-2001), and later on in the Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, where he received his diploma ’summa cum laude’ as a professional clarinetist and teacher (2007). During these years his professors were Gyulai Endre, Miháltz Gábor, Dittrich Tibor.
He attended several masterclasses as an active participant with such masters as Kurtág György, Henk Guittart, Rados Ferenc, Hadady László , Balogh József, Szeverényi Ilona, Déri György, Gyöngyössy Zoltán, Hargitai Imre, Hegedûs Endre, Rozmán Lajos, Szabó Antal és Vajda József.
Since 2007 he has been performing very actively either as a soloist, chamber music player or orchestra member in Hungary, England, Brazil, Lithuania, Germany, Russia, Armenia, Switzerland, Serbia. He performed at many important venues and festivals like the Hungarian Radio, Palace of Art (Budapest), Liszt Ferenc Academy of Music, a Bartók Festival Szombathely, Making New Waves Festival Budapest.
He is one of the founding members of the Balassa Clarinet Quintett, Voce d’Amore Clarinet Orchestra, Teatro di Musica Orchestra and Ventoscala Orchestra. In 2009 he performed together with Ágens in Hungary. In 2009 he joined the Barefoot Musicians artists’ group, where he regularly plays together with Éva Bodrogi, soprano singer and Katalin Koltai, guitarist.
As an orchestra player he performed with such conductors as Christoph Eschenbach, Fischer Sivan, Gál Tamás, Christopher Hogwood, Kocsis Zoltán, Helmuth Rilling.
He performed on several recordings of Hungarian composers and also played film music like in Steven Spielberg: Munich and Pálfi György: Taxidermia.
Zsolt Bartek is a recognized player at the Hungarian contemporary music life. His unique musical personality and wide instrumental knowledge (playing clarinets, recorders, saxophone and several other related instrument) brings him that many composers invite him to play premiers on their work. Besides receiving many dedications he played first performances of compositions of the following Hungarian composers: Alpár Balázs, Meskó Ilona, Zombola Péter, Dinnyés Dániel, Dragony Tímea, Leszkovszki Albin, Futó Balázs, Kerékfy Márton, Tornyai Péter, Horváth Balázs, Horvát Bálint, Dargai Marcell, Bella Máté, Kedves Csanád, Szigeti Máté, Matkó Tamás, Kákonyi Árpád, Cser Ádám, Oláh Dezsõ, Wettl Mátyás, Derecskei András, Sztojanov Georgi, Maróti Emese, Horváth Márton Levente, Karosi Bálint, Gyöngyössy Levente.
Zsolt Bartek is also interested to play in interdisciplinary performances, therefor he played in several modern theatre shows in Hungary like Bástyasétány 77 (Radnóti Miklós Theatre) and Nádas Péter: Találkozás (Bárka Theatre )