The Chilliwack Youth Orchestra

Johan Louwersheimer’s unique musical background and training has provided him with the enviable ability to stand in front of both professional and community orchestras and choirs. Maestro Louwersheimer began his training in conducting when he received an international scholarship to pursue doctoral studies in conducting at the University of Washington in Seattle world renowned Maestro, Peter Eros.  In Seattle, Maestro Louwersheimer initiated the University Summer Orchestra program, which he conducted for three consecutive summers. Maestro Louwersheimer toured with the Washington University Symphony and received the Warren Babb Memorial Award. In 1991, Maestro founded the Octava Chamber Orchestra in collaboration with concertmaster Matthew Weiss. With Octava, Maestro Louwersheimer toured Washington and the Fraser Valley in British Columbia. Octava has featured renowned soloists including Bela Siki, and Steven Stark.

Our Artistic Staff

Artistic Director - Johan Louwersheimer

In 1995 Maestro Louwersheimer began his twenty-year commitment as the Artistic Director of the Handel Society in White Rock, British Columbia. Under his baton the choir has performed large scale choral orchestral masterworks including J.S. Bach’s St. Matthew Passion and St. John Passion, Mozart’s Masses and Requiem, Haydns Masses, Beethoven’s Masses and Ninth Symphony, Schubert’s great Masses, Puccini’s Messa di Gloria, and the music of Benjamin Britten. For the celebration of the Handel Society’s 30th anniversary, Mr. Louwersheimer was instrumental in commissioning a new Canadian composition by Bruce Ruddell.

In 1995 Maestro Louwersheimer founded the Abbotsford Symphony Orchestra and Abbotsford Symphony Orchestra Chorus and served as the Artistic Director from 1995-2007. As conductor of the Abbotsford Symphony Maestro Louwersheimer collaborated with outstanding Canadian musicians including Judith Forst, Anton Kuerti, Robert Silverman, Stephen Lemelin, Jonathon Crow, Jennifer Lim, and Ian Parker. Maestro Louwersheimer developed the much-loved educational Discovery Concerts to promote orchestra music to school age children. In 2007, Maestro Louwersheimer received the Paul Harris Fellow Award from the Abbotsford Rotary Club for his commitment in promoting music in the community. In September 2009, local musicians and Maestro Louwersheimer founded the Chilliwack Metropolitan Orchestra. For the final concert of the 2010-11 season Maestro Louwersheimer commissioned the Divertimento for Three Trombones by Canadian composer, Michel R. Edward.

The scope of Maestro Louwersheimer musical career has included serving as the Artistic Director of the UW summer program, as the Artist in Residence at the prestigious University of Washington and Lee in Virginia, and in addition he has mentored musicians through master classes, as an adjudicator and clinician.  Currently Maestro Louwersheimer serves as a guest conductor, the artistic director of the Handel Society of Music, the musical director/conductor of the Octava Chamber Orchestra in Seattle, as well as mentoring young musicians via the Chilliwack Youth Orchestra.

Born and raised in Chilliwack, David has been playing violin since the age of three and teaching for the past twenty-five years.  He performs regularly in the area and has served as concertmaster of both the Chilliwack Metropolitan Orchestra and the Chilliwack Symphony Orchestra.  As conductor and co-founder ofthe Chilliwack Metropolitan Youth Orchestra (2008 - 2014), David has seen the inspiration and camaraderie that ensemble playing provides for young musicians.  His own teacher, Walter Neufeld, was known for an excellent string orchestra in Abbotsford.  Many Fraser Valley musicians and teachers had the opportunity to perform in that orchestra and David is dedicated to continuing this tradition of high calibre instruction in Chilliwack.  When he is not teaching, performing or conducting, David loves spending time with his wife and three children. 

Orchestra Manager/Conductor - David Voth

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