The Luisenstädter Vokalensemble ...

... is the mixed choir of the protestant parish named St. Jacobi-Luisenstadt in Kreuzberg , Berlin . Following the tradition of the church choir of the St. Jacobi-Church (since 1845) the Luisenstädter Vokalensemble was newly founded by its conductor Oliver Lüsch (sacral and school musician) in 1988.

On the one hand the name of the choir is a result of the identification with the double parish of St. Jacobi-Luisenstadt and on the other hand it stresses the local aspect "Luisenstadt", a former suburb of the old Berlin .

The musical arrangements ...

... of well-known and unknown (rarities) pieces of music and therefore flexibility in the chorus sound are the aims of our work. Pleasure in singing shall be created, understanding of music and a feeling of community shall be encouraged. Important parts of our "singing" are voice training and the analysis of the texts sung by the choir, which supports an understanding and better interpretation of the texts which sound sometimes strange to us nowadays.

It goes without saying that the Luisenstädter Vokalensemble sings during the services and gives concerts, which do not take place in church. Often a suitable or unusual scene for the performances is chosen: Once the choir sang in the darkness under the starry night of the Zeiss-Planetarium, then it performed the "Creation" by Haydn under the world wide biggest dinosaur's skeleton in the Museum of Natural History and was seen on GDR television during the autumn of change in 1989 (die Wende).

On the occasion of a musical festival ...

... in Berlin where a great number of Berlin Choirs participate took place called "Singende, klingende Stadt" (Singing, sounding town) in September 1996, the Luisenstädter Vokalensemble opened the series of concerts on "Sacral Chorus Music" in the Marienkirche (St. Mary's Church) and on the same occasion in 1998 the choir gave a concert in the French Cathedral on the Gendarmenmarkt (Gendarme Market), Berlin.

The Luisenstädter Vokalensemble ‑ experts say that it is the best choir in Kreuzberg at the time being ‑ appears on stage with alternative scoring. Each part is sung by different voices according to the choir's programme. Also the choir co-operates with a great number of choirs and orchestras.

Several concert tours took the Luisenstädter Vokalensemble to Czech and Austria . Various CD-productions of live recordings document the complexity of the choir.

Among other works the following pieces of music were worked out and performed:

Georg Phillip Telemann          ‑    Die Tageszeiten [The Times of day] (Performance in the Planetarium)]

Franz Schubert                         ‑    Messe G-Dur [Mass in G major]

Ariel Ramirez                             ‑    Missa Criolla

Franz Liszt                                 ‑    Via crucis

Camille Saint-Saëns                 ‑    Oratorio de Noël and Messe de Requiem

Georg Friedrich Händel          ‑    Cäcilienode [Ode to Cecilia] (Performances in the Schinkel-Museum and in the Conservatory in Cottbus )

                                                    ‑    Israel in Egypt (double choral oratorio)

Johann Christian Bach            ‑    Gloria in excelsis

Joseph Haydn                           ‑    Die Schöpfung [The Creation] (among others in the Museum of Natural History ), Nelson-Mass (in British Embassy Berlin )

Charles Gounod                       ‑    Cäcilienmesse [Mass to Cecilia] (among others in the new ATRIUM Friedrichstr.)

Leonard Bernstein                   ‑    Missa brevis

Giacomo Puccini                       ‑    Requiem

Heinrich Schütz                        ‑    Weihnachtshistorie [Christmas Story] (in scenic performance)

Giuseppe Verdi                         ‑    Requiem

as well as multichoral motets by Heinrich Schütz, various cantatas by Johann Sebastian Bach and works for chorus and organ by César Franck, Johannes Brahms, Felix Mendelssohn Bartholdy and Benjamin Britten.

Rehearsals are held in the church hall of the St. Jacobi-Church, Oranienstr.132 - 134, 10969 Berlin (Thursdays 7:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m., vocal rehearsals start at 7 p.m.).

Information: Oliver Lüsch or rather
Luisenstädter Vokalensemble, Oranienstr.132-134, D - 10969 Berlin
(+49 30) 616 09 619, Fax 616 59 791