Horst-Hans Backer heads Liceo Music Conservatory

Apr 26, 2017



The newly established Music Conservatory of Liceo de Cagayan University has a new director and how he got here from Bonn, Germany is a story in itself.


Horst Hans Backer conducts in Wuppertal, Germany.

Horst Hans Backer conducts in Wuppertal, Germany.

Horst-Hans Bäcker was born in Romania where he learned to play the piano at age five. He started his musical career by studying composition from 1981 with Professor Ludwig Werner Weiand at the conservatory in Wuppertal, Germany.


He continued his studies at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, Austria with Prof. Gyula Horvath (composition), with Prof. Kurt Prestel (ensemble conducting) and Prof. Nikolaus Harnoncourt (performance practice of early music). He completed his training in composition under Professor Jürg Baur at the Rhineland Academy of Music in Cologne, Germany (1986-1989)


Since then, he has been commissioned to compose music by musicians and chamber ensembles from all over the world. In addition, he has been commissioned to compose music for special occasions by various European cities. With his composition From the Depths I Cry Out to You, Lord Bäcker won the prize of the De Profundis Composers’ Competition in Cologne.


In 1984 Bäcker founded the Salzburger Vokalensemble chamber choir and directed it until his departure from Salzburg. Later he also founded another symphony orchestra, which eventually became the Internationale Philharmonie in 1996 with him as Principal Conductor. 


 Bäcker completed his formation as a conductor in Master Classes with Jorma Panula. He has been a regular guest conductor for the Arad Philharmonic Orchestra, Banatul Philharmonic Orchestra in Timisoara, Moldova Philharmonic Orchestra in Iasi, and Oradea, Sibiu and Craiova Philharmonic Orchestras in Romania, the Northern Hungarian Symphony Orchestra in Hungary and for the choir and orchestra of Camerata Antiqua de Curitiba (Brazil).


Since 2003 Bäcker was a frequent guest conductor of Arad State Philharmonic Orchestra, the State Philharmonic Orchestra “Oltenia” in Craiova and the State Philharmonic Orchestra “Banat” in Timisoara since 2006 where he was commissioned to compose a work for Choir and Orchestra for the Celebration of 60 years as Romanian State Orchestra.


His composition Rapsodia Timisoreana  included tributes to renowned Romanian Composer George Enescu and famous Romanian poet Mihai Eminescu, was enthusiastically received by the choir, the orchestra, and the audience.


Spanish Night

Spanish Night

Bäcker’s first CD SPANISH NIGHT features Joaquin Rodrigo’s Concertos for 1, 2 and 4 Guitars and Orchestra was critically acclaimed by the critics. So was the follow up SPANISH NIGHT II with the guitarist Dale Kavanagh, Amadeus Guitar Duo, panpipes artist Gheorghe Zamfir and the State Philharmonic Arad.


Another orchestral work Rapsodia Mallorquina the CD Berühmte Opernarien – Panflöte und Orchester with soloist Gheorghe Zamfir and State Philharmonic Arad, as well as the CD Zauber Panflöte with panpipes artist Matthias Schlubeck and the State Philharmonic Transylvania were likewise well received.


Die Zauber Pan Flote

Die Zauber Pan Flote

Among the many solo musical artists he has worked with, Bäcker has established long-term musical partnerships with panpipes artists Gheorghe Zamfir and Matthias Schlubeck, violinists Christina Anghelescu, Bogdan Dragus, Sophie Moser and Sebastian Casleanu, Canadian guitarist Dale Kavanagh, the German-CanadianAmadeus Guitar Duo , Briton Eden-Stell,  and pianists Katja Huhn, Ekaterina Litvintseva, Mihai Ungureanu andTamas Vesmas.


All works by Horst-Hans Bäcker are edited by Waldkauz Musikverlag, www.waldkauz.de


Panflote und Orchester

Panflote und Orchester

Besides his career as a composer, conductor and recording artist, Bäcker also became the director of a musical school in Langehagen, Germany where students learned the rudiments of dance, music and playing instruments.


Later, he also set up his own private school in Bonn. Although the city had its own state music school, the waiting line for enrollees was so long that there were four private musical schools (including Bäcker’s) to take up the slack. His school had  17 teachers in all and an enrollment of 300.


In 2014 he sold the school and worked as a freelance conductor and composer before coming over to the Philippines to explore greener pastures in 2015.


In September 2015, he met Rudolf P. Golez, dean of the Liceo de Cagayan University College of Music who invited him to conduct his Historical Informed Performance at Manila Pianos owned by Willem Van Suijdam. After a chat with Dean Golez, he also conducted a Meister Class one week later at Rodelsa Hall. Eventually, Bäcker decided by December 2015 to move to Cagayan de Oro for good.


The dream shared by the two maestros was to set up a musical school and conservatory with a curriculum like what they had in Germany as soon as possible.


To start, Bäcker was appointed director of the Liceo Music Conservatory. Joining him are Piano Virtuoso Rudolf P. Golez, Italian violinist Tullio Vidmar, and a core of gifted Filipino musician-instructors sharing the dream and vision to bring classical music back to its lofty pedestal where it was previously held in reverential respect and admiration by the Kagay-anons.


While admitting there’s still a long road ahead before that dream could be realized, Bäcker is optimistic they can make good time as music lovers in Cagayan de Oro come together to help realize that dream.


“Filipinos have an innate sense of melody and rhythm which you cannot easily find in other people,” the maestro noted. “I have also met some other patrons and music aficionados recently who are willing to help us attain that dream. So I believe we can do it, whether sooner or later, only God knows when and how, but together with the help of our community, eventually we can do it and that is enough reward for me.”



Following are some links to Bäcker works:

Rodrigo: Fantasia para un Gentilhombre



Queen: Bohemian Rhapsody – Filarmonica de Stat Arad


Queen: We are the Champions – Filarmonica de Stat Arad



Queen: Love of my Life ­Filarmonica de Stat Arad













3:18-3:53 https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=trcqnW_pmkQ

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