The Dutch formation Jong Metropole is the result of an unusual cooperation between the Youth Orchestra oft he Netherlands (NJO), the Youth Jazz Orchestra of the Netherlands and the Metropole Orkest – with the goal of supporting young talents from the fields of classical and non-classical music on their paths to a professional career. The combination of the classical tradition with swing, jazz and improvisation is the project’s main focus. On the one hand, the approximately 60 musicians aged 18 to 26 meet in full strength for several working phases with subsequent tours; on the other, they work on innovative music projects in smaller ensembles. Master courses with renowned guest soloists and members of the Metropole Orkest are part of the curriculum. Founded in the summer of 2015, the Jong Metropole makes its Young Euro Classic debut this summer.
As a conductor, composer and arranger, Jochen Neuffer works not only for internationally renowned orchestras, but also for some of the leading artists of our times. In cross-genre projects with the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Quincy Jones Orchestra, the Heritage Orchestra, the Metropole Orkest, the Netherlands Chamber Orchestra or the Los Angeles Philharmonic, he has worked with Gregory Porter, Lisa Fischer, Lalah Hathaway, Ledisi, James Morrison, Paul Weller, Donny McCaslin, Bryan Ferry, Jacob Collier, Mark Guiliana, Cory Wong and many others. As a specialist for non-classical ensemble and orchestra projects, Jochen Neuffer’s work has been documented on numerous media. He is invited regularly to renowned traditional concert stages, but also to major festivals such as the BBC Proms, the North Sea Jazz Festival and the Montreux Festival.
Jong Metropole is a unique youth orchestra in which students of classical and jazz departments of Dutch conservatories can acquire the finer points of orchestral music. Think of a mix of classical music, film, jazz and popular and you have a picture of the ecclectic music mix this orchestra will bring to Berlin. In 2021 Jochen Neuffer, the Berlin-based conductor, composer and arranger for pop luminaries such as Gregory Porter and Ledisi, uses his ear and instinct for pop music to create a programme with the young members of Jong Metropole which will raise the Konzerthaus roof!
One special highlight is the German premiere of Reunion, commissioned by Jong Metropole from Damiano Pascarelli. This young composer, arranger and conductor won the Rogier van Otterloo Prize in 2019, which enabled him to study with one of the best: after working intensively with the Grammy and Emmy nominated Vince Mendoza in Los Angeles, Pascarelli completed his piece during the Covid lockdown. It ideally combines the tradition of Jong Metropole with its symphonic potential, embodying the hopeful wish to finally playing together again.