Artists biographies
LandesJugendAkkordeonOrchester NRW

The LandesJugendAkkordeonOrchester NRW (LJAO-NRW, or ‘North Rhine Westphalia State Accordion Orchestra’) recently celebrated its 30th anniversary, making it a firmly established youth orchestra in North-Rhine Westphalia’s music scene. It is supported by the state government and funded by the Landesmusikrat NRW (State Music Council).

Brought to life in 1986 under the conductor Jürgen Löchter, it quickly established itself as a model orchestra for many accordion ensembles in the state. Guido Wagner and the composer Hans Boll followed between 1991 and 1995. In 1996 Herbert Nolte (accordion teacher and orchestral conductor from Düren) took over the LJAO-NRW in 1996. Between 2001 and 2004 Helmut Quakernack (music teacher, composer, lecturer at the Wuppertal Music Academy) worked as an assistant for the LJAO-NRW, then between 2005 and 2016 as its musical director. Since 2017 Stefan Hippe (composer, accordion player and conductor from Nuremberg) has been in charge.

Over the years the orchestra has been able to go on several concert trips in both Germany and other countries. Performances all over Germany as well as in Finland, Italy, Russia, Brazil, China and Colombia are examples of this.

Regular recordings document the development of the LJAO-NRW (1998 ‘Die Erste’, 2002 ‘A Legend from Yao’, 2010 ‘Tango und mehr’, 2012 ‘Transylvania’, 2015 ‘Vielfaltig’). The ensemble has also always achieved excellent positions at the Deutsches Auswahlorchester competition, which takes place every four years (1998 2nd place, 2001 1st place, 2010 2nd place, 2014 2nd place).

The orchestra meets several times a year to rehearse a number of concert programmes. Its main task, however, is the contemporary performance of largely original compositions for accordion orchestras. Supporting and artistic original literature and making it more widely known is an important goal for the orchestra.

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Appearances at the
Beethovenfest 2017