About the Orchestra
The Berliner Bären JugendOrchester is run by a team of young international musicians who seek to bring youth of all backgrounds together through the joining power and greatness of music.
Youth run by Youth
Who knows better what is exciting for young musicians than other youths? We are a young team of experienced musicians who want to inspire and motivate other young people to realize their full potential as humans, musicians, and instrumentalists.
Play with the Pros
Every month, we invite a young professional musician to play side-by-side with our students. Our guest musicians are young professionals working in the classical music field or students at universities. They share their invaluable experience with our students and help inspire them to reach their fullest potential.
Learn music, learn life
Playing in an orchestra provides students with invaluable skills for their lives as musicians as well as professionals in any field they choose in the future. Learning to deal with other musicians as coworkers and equals is an important part of making beautiful music. The skills of cooperation, mediation, and communication are key for orchestral playing, and these skills are equally applicable to any profession today.
Learn with others, learn from others
One of the goals of the Berliner Bären JugendOrchester is also to bring students of different backgrounds together to play masterworks of all styles and time periods. We want to have students of any nationality or economical status participate in the orchestra as peers and equals. This, we believe, allows students to learn understanding for each other and encourages them to demonstrate that understanding to others in the future.
Deutsch und English
The main language of the Orchestra course will be German, but because of our international backgrounds and our desire to create an international atmosphere without boundaries, we are able to welcome any students who are not fluent in German yet and provide them with English instruction.
BBJ is therefore a fantastic opportunity for students to learn new cultures and languages from each other.
We care about motivation, not experience
Achieving greatness in performance is one of our goals. Adapting our teaching and our repertoire to the student experience is another priority for us. We will motivate students to give their best but we will also do everything possible to adapt the music repertoire and the rehearsals to each individual in order to provide the best conditions for them to achieve greatness and progress as a musician. Every motivated student with at least one year of music experience is therefore welcome to BBJ.
An experienced conductor
As with any youth orchestra, one of our primary goals will be the musical education of our students. This will be achieved by the weekly rehearsals led by director Mary-Jo Bell, an accomplished conductor with several years of experience with youth ensembles and orchestra direction. Using a proven pedagogical method, she seeks to instill a love for music-making and camaraderie as well as the desire to strive for greatness in the students she works with.
An international, experienced team
BBJ Orchestra Manager
Assistant Conductor and Orchestra Librarian/Musical Arrangments
Master in Cello Performance
Professional Cellist & Music Teacher
BBJ Project & Product Manager
Ph.D. in Sciences
Entrepreneur, Singer Songwriter
BBJ Musical Director
Master in Composition-Piano-Percussion
4 years as Assistant Conductor
(Baltic Sea Youth Philharmonic & MDR Leipzig Radio Symphonic Orchestra)