Leuphana Ensembles: New directors in the summer semester

2022-05-06 In the current summer semester of 2022, Anja Sommerer and Pascal F. Skuppe will take over the direction of two Leuphana Ensembles each. The theme of the semester will be "War and Peace".

[Translate to Englisch:] Anja Sommerer und Pascal F. Skuppe ©Leuphana/Anastasia Adasheva
Anja Sommerer and Pascal F. Skuppe

"Making music together is a great form of communication because there is no opponent. It only works with each other." An ensemble does not function by solo effort, explains Pascal F. Skuppe. The musician will take over the direction of the University Choir and the Leuphana Chamber Choir in the summer semester of 2022. Skuppe describes himself as a "wanderer between the worlds“, because he was mainly shaped by crossover projects between the genres of classical music and rock/pop. These projects, Skuppe explains, make a classification into serious or entertainment music obsolete. He initiated and directed the concert project "Jesus Christ - Superstar?", which combines Johann Sebastian Bach's "St. Matthew Passion" and Sir Andrew Lloyd Webber's "Jesus Christ Superstar". Skuppe is also the founder and director of the non-profit organization "THE MUSICAL COMPANY" since 2018, which works at the interface between amateur and professional musical performance in Seevetal-Maschen.

"I am a servant of music and sound," says Anja Sommerer. She is the director of the Camerata and the orchestra in the summer semester. Sommerer has already led a youth orchestra in Flensburg and is concertmaster of an ensemble of students and professional musicians. "This is a challenge I have been waiting for," says Sommerer about her new task at Leuphana. Musically, she has a broad background: "I have a classical education and worked at the opera for eighteen years." Sommerer has already had a punk band and a tango band and is passionate about grunge from the nineties. Making music has a special meaning for the Leipzig resident by choice: "For me, making music is touching souls."

Together, Sommerer and Skuppe are looking forward to the musical work with the students. The semester theme of the Leuphana ensembles, "War and Peace" finds expression in the planned pieces "Verleih uns Frieden" by Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy, "Aquarius/Let the Sunshine in" from the musical Hair and the work "Melody" by the Ukrainian composer Skoryk. "I have the pedagogical and scientific ambition to get to know different styles from Renaissance to New Music and vocal techniques with the students," Skuppe takes on. "Students come to ensembles because they want to play," Sommerer explains. For her, the focus is on learning how to play in an orchestra and experiencing sound together. This year, too, the semester will end for the ensembles with a concert.