Torkest Veghel

Torkest Veghel


In 1973, as accordion teacher in Veghel at the Veghel music school starting with approximately 20 students, I quickly tried to start an ensemble, something that in my view, is a wonderful addition to individual lessons. Social contact is in many cases extremely stimulating, moreover I am as a 'average' musician able to do better with others than as a solo-artist. In the very beginning starting an ensemble, showed not to be easy. Partly because our music-school is a regional school. Thus, some students come from the 'Boerdonk' area to 'Berlicum' and an second visit to the music-school takes much organization.

But a start has already been made in 1983 with Torkest, in addition to the already existing smaller groups of beginners. In the living room of the family 'Looijmans' in Erp the first notes of the Torkest were played. The players from the beginning where: Brigitte Looijmans, Helma van der Heijden, Peter Hill, Ingrid van Berlo, Marga van Asseldonk and Angelique van Berlo. Angelique, an enthusiastic accordeonfan, has now graduated from the Tilburg Conservatiorium and Utrecht University as a teacher Music School and Accordion. Then she emigrated together with former Torkestlid Peter Hill to Canada. She has been the main reason for our visit to Toronto. 

Soon the rehersals moved to the Veghel Music School, at that time located at the Beemd Veghel. 

Since a number of years the Mr. Coothstraat of 11 became the home of the Music Schoon veghel. Torkest now consists of 27 accordionists and two percussionists. The members are aged betwen 15 to 35 years, combining fun and music at a high level. In recent years Torkest became increasingly international and we performed in Canada (2x), Sweden, Denmark, Russia, China and Scotland. In 1998, the 1st album "Confidence" was recorded and the 2nd CD in 2008, "Melodia del mondo". Besides Torkest are meanwhile also two other ensembles develop: The Javes and d'Accord.

These days, Torkest is active under 'Phoenix' - the new music and culture organiztion - at the 'Noordkade' Veghel.