The registration for the conference is still open, but mainly for only participation:

International conference on


… in its meaning of repertoire!

Steven Walter, artistic director of the Podium Esslingen and designated artistic director of the Beethovenfest Bonn, and Tamara Kohler from “Contemporary Music for All (CoMA)” will give initial impulses on this topic.

The conference participants are invited to discuss these issues in workshops.

How do we choose our concert programme?
What practical and immaterial conditions do we have to consider?
What do we have to offer the audience?


… and synergies between amateur and professional orchestras and musicians on an international level.

The status quo in amateur orchestras worldwide and existing models from the USA and Eastern Europe will be presented at the conference.

A good practice of sustainable and successful orchestra tutorships will be discussed.

The cooperation of amateur music with musical educational institutions (e.g. music colleges, universities) will be focused on in a panel discussion on educational opportunities and professional perspectives.


… as a social impact of music making and as a basis for future visions of amateur orchestras on a global stage.

Impulses from various regions of the world (expected from Afghanistan, Kenya, South America and a global initiative) give an insight of the social impact of music making and orchestral practice.

A joint brainstorming session and an open discussion format provide space for thoughts on “The amateur orchestra of the future”.

As we are still in a special situation due to the global pandemic, it is particularly important to emphasise the issues of this conference even more.

The world will not be the same as before, going back to normality does not exist. The amateur music has to be prepared for a change, a Plan B. At the conference, you can do your part to provoke and advance a change in thinking.

Conference programme and schedule

The conference is planned as a hybrid event.
The physical meeting in Dresden will be supplemented by livestreams (keynotes and panel discussions) and hybrid discussion rounds in order to facilitate an online participation. If a physical event is not possible due to current events related to the Corona pandemic, the conference will be held as a digital event.

arrival of the conference participants, check-in starting from 2 p.m.

afternoon: EOFed board meeting

(time tba) WFAO board meeting

6 p.m. registration at the conference hotel (lobby)

7 p.m. Welcome reception and dinner for all conference participants

10-10.30 a.m. welcome speech
Helge Lorenz (President of German Association of Amateur Orchestras)
Jüri Ruut-Kangur (President of the European Orchestra Federation)
Carl Ninian Wika (President of the World Federation of Amateur Orchestras)

10.30-11 a.m. Warm Up I

11-11.20 a.m. Opening lecture
Daniel Kellerhals, EOFed honorary president

11.25-11.55 a.m. Warm Up II

12-12.15 p.m. short break

12.15-1.15 p.m. Impuls talks

Impuls I: “Beethoven’s music today and different forms of performing it”
Steven Walter, designated artistic director of the Beethovenfest Bonn

Impuls II: How new/contemporary music can be made accesible for amateur orchestras?
Tamara Kohler, Festival Director at Contemporary Music for All (CoMA)

1.30-3 p.m. lunch break

3-4.15 p.m. Workshop – discussion

“What do we want to perform, for whom and where do we get our music from?”

Workshop leaders: Steven Walter (Beethovenfest Bonn), Tamara Kohler (CoMA), Helmuth Reichel da Silva (conductor)

4.30-5 p.m. presentations of the results

5-5.30 p.m. coffee break

5.30 p.m. Dresden city tour with local amateur musicians

7.30 p.m. reception and social event / location: Lingnerterrassen (Bautzner Str. 132, 01099 Dresden)

10-11.45 a.m. Keynotes and presentation

Keynote I: “Community Orchestras in the United Sates”
Andrew Perkins (conductor, Fenton Community Orchestra, USA)

Keynote II: “Amateur Orchestras in Eastern Europe”
Gábor Horváth (conductor, Hungary)

Presentation: “Existing collaboration between amateur orchestras and professional musicians within BDLO, EOFed, WFAO”
speaker: Kiyomi von Frankenberg, BDLO

Questions after each keynote

11.45 a.m. -1 p.m. lunch break

1.15-2.30 p.m. Workshops “Interaction”

workshop leaders: Carl Ninian Wika, Daniel Kellerhals, Jüri-Ruut Kangur, tba

2.45 – 3.15 p.m. presentation of the results

3.15-3.30 short break

3.30-5 Panel discussion “Competition or Collaboration?” – training opportunities and perspectives for professional musicians in amateur music

Stefan Gies (CEO, Association Européenne des Conservatoires, Académies de Musique et Musikhochschulen)
Ekkehard Klemm (Dean of Conducting/ Correpetition, Dresden College of Music, conductor)
Tim Fluch (student, Dresden College of Music)
Christine Sickert (Bachelor of Music (French Horn/ student of psychology)

presenter: Juan Andrés Rojas Castillo (Director of the Filarmónica Jóven de Colombia)

Q&A afterwards

5-6 p.m. networking and “marketplace” (see more details below)

7.30 p.m. concert of BTHVN 2021 – The Orchestra (international amateur orchestra)

afterwards “meet and greet” with the orchestra musicians

10-11.30 a.m. Presentations “The social impact of music” – good practice

topics and guests
“Music in difficult conditions” Dr. Ahmed Sarmast (Afghanistan National Institue of Music, Kabul)
“Filármonica Metropolitana del Valle de Aburrá” – Alejandro Vásquez Mejía (Pasión y Corazón Foundation, Colombia)
“Orchestras Music in the developement of children” – Viviana Valenzuela (PhD, University of Buenos Aires, Argentina)
“The social impact of music making in Kenya”Dr. Duncan Miano Wanbugu (
Music Educator, Conductor, lecturer at Kenyatta University, Kenya)
“The power of restarting and lifelong music making” – Elena Rahona (Late Starters Orchestra New York, USA)

presenter: Juan Andrés Rojas Castillo (Director of the Filarmónica Jóven de Colombia)

Q&A afterwards

11.30-11.50 a.m. break

11.50 a.m. Open space “The amateur orchestra of the future”


12.15-1 p.m. Round I

1-2.15 p.m. lunch break

2.15-3 p.m. Round II

3-3.15 p.m. break

3.15-4 p.m. Round III

4-4.15 p.m. break

4.15-5 p.m. presentation of the results

5-5.30 p.m. Wrap Up / Closing speech

End of the conference – departure (optional)

The conference schedule may be subject to change at short notice.

“Marketplace – Passion meets Profession
After prior registration, each participant/ represented organisation will have the opportunity to present its work/orchestra and to exhibit information material (flyers, posters, etc.). The official time for the Marketplace is Monday, 20 September 2021 from 5 to 6 p.m. / Display desks for your material will be provided during the whole conference.

Conference Hotel

Intercity Hotel Dresden (located at Dresden Main Station)
Wiener Platz 8
01069 Dresden, Germany

Travel information

Travelling by plane

Dresden Airport (DRS) – 20 minutes train ride to the conference hotel
Leipzig Airport (LEJ) – 90 minutes train ride to the conference hotel

Travelling by train

The conference offers an event ticket with special conditions for using the Deutsche Bahn to get to the conference venue. Please find all information about this offer here.

Travelling by car

There is the possibility to order a conference ticket (long-term parking tickets for the booked stay – multiple entries and exits possible) for a local car park. The costs for this (15,- € per night) will be covered by the conference participant.

Participation fee

For BDLO / EOFed / WFAO members

  • 250,- €

For Non-BDLO / EOFed / WFAO members

  • 300,- €

Online participation is free of charge.

Please note:

  • Travel expenses and insurances must be fully covered by the participants.
  • The conference fee for private accompanying persons is calculated to cover all costs and depends on whether conference participation is desired (Please send corresponding enquiries to
  • If additional overnight stays are required or desired, these must be booked directly with the respective hotel and paid for by the participant.


The conference fee includes:

  • Accommodation incl. breakfast from 18 to 21 September 2021 at the Intercity Hotel Dresden
  • The welcome reception on 18 September 2021
  • Meals (3x lunch, 2x dinner at the conference hotel) and refreshments during the conference
  • The social event (19 September 2021)
  • The entrance fee for a concert of BTHVN 2021 – The Orchestra on 20.09.2021

About the conference

The conference is intended to be a platform for those working in the field of amateur and professional music: Professional and amateur musicians, music researchers, professionals from the educational sector and representatives of national and international umbrella organisations. The participants are invited to exchange and share their expertise in order to develop concrete visions for the future and find new fields of interaction. The conference is organised in cooperation with the European Orchestra Federation and the World Federation of Amateur Orchestras, so international networking and the outcome for the participants are very important to us.

Why you should participate


sustainable and successful cooperation between amateur and professional orchestras


from international good practice models


experiences with representatives of international organisations


the vision of the amateur orchestra of the future


knowlegde and expertise with your international colleagues

A project by

Funded by

In cooperation with

World Federation of Amateur Orchestras