- Anja Silja soprano
- Marie Seidler mezzo soprano
- Daniel Johannsen tenor
- Michael Zehe bass
- Neue Philharmonie Westfalen
- Philharmonischer Chor der Stadt Bonn
- Paul Krämer preparation
- Michael Hofstetter conductor
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The Neue Philharmonie Westfalen was formed in 1996 through the merger of two orchestras of the northern part of the Ruhr: the Westfälisches Sinfonieorchester Recklinghausen and the Philharmonisches Orchester of Gelsenkirchen. Supporters of the orchestra are the state of North-Rhine Westphalia as well as the towns of Gelsenkirchen and Recklinghausen and the district of Unna. The Austrian conductor Johannes Wildner was the musical director of the Neue Philharmonie Westfalen between 1997 and 2007. Heiko Mathias Förster from Mecklenburg took over this role in the summer of 2007. Rasmus Baumann, previously the principal conductor at the Musiktheater im Revier based in Gelsenkirchen, has been the orchestra’s musical director since summer 2014.
The orchestra is one of the largest in the region and completes almost 300 engagements in Germany and other countries every season. From a repertoire perspective the orchestra is able, with its 130 musicians, to cover the entire palette of orchestral literature, from the Baroque to modern compositions. In addition to playing at the Musiktheater im Revier in Gelsenkirchen and giving symphony concerts across the Ruhr, its work for children and young people makes up a lot of the orchestra’s creative output. Film and crossover concerts with pop, rock and jazz music are part of its repertoire.
It is part of the philosophy of the largest of the three state orchestras in North-Rhine Westphalia to immortalize outstanding projects as recordings. As a result the Neue Philharmonie Westfalen can now look back on around 20 CDs.
In recent years the orchestra has managed to make a name for itself far beyond the borders of the Ruhr. The state orchestra has given concerts in the Kölner Philharmonie, the Berlin Philharmonie, in the Glocke Bremen, in the Teatro Dante Alighieri in Ravenna, in the Teatro Communale di Modena, in the Tonhalle Zürich and in the KölnArena with its highly acclaimed performance of the ‘Lord of the Rings’ symphony. In September 2009 the orchestra accepted an invitation to perform at the Grosses Festspielhaus in Salzburg. The ensemble celebrated its first non-European debut when it was still young, in autumn 2000: the Neue Philharmonie Westfalen accepted an invitation to the Beijing Festival in China’s capital.
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