When Helena Rüegg was studying bandoneon at the Rotterdam Conservatory, one day her phone rang: “Do you want to play in my tango quintet? “I would love to”, says Helena, “but unfortunately I can’t really play yet! “That doesn’t matter”, the answer was “the most important thing is that you’re there!”. That’s how Helena Rüegg met the guitarist and leader of the Quinteto Bailongo Rob Bangert in 1996 and the two became close friends. Over the past 25 years, they have come up with many musical adventures together and shared them with others. Since 2018 Helena and Rob play together mainly as a duo. Because the moon with its suggestive appearance often inspires them for their various projects they call themselves “Duo La Luna”. Helena and Rob want to offer their audience more than a standard concert program. That’s why they combine their play with other art forms such as poetry, stories, movies, theater and dance. Their most recent concert program Nostalghia, which premiered in the South of France in August 2020, is also an interplay of text and music.The central theme is the story of a mysterious Hungarian immigrant who discovered the world of “milongueros” and “tangueros” (tango dancers and tango lovers) in Buenos Aires at the beginning of the 20th century. Embedded in this frame story are traditional tangos, own newly composed pieces and two compositions by famous Argentine guitarists written especially for the Duo La Luna.

Helena Rüegg – Bandoneonist, Composer & Actress

After an internship at the Théâtre d’Orsay at Jean-Louis Barrault in 1978, Helena Rüegg studied actress at the Neue Münchner Schauspielschule in Munich, Germany. In 1980 she began at the Münchner Residenztheater and continued her career at the theaters “Städtische Bühnen Münster”, “Stadttheater Basel” and “Schauspielhaus Bochum” at Claus Peymann.

In 1992 Helena discovers the bandoneon she studied with Rodolfo Mederos in Buenos Aires and Juan José Mosalini in Paris. In 1993 she began to study at the tango department of the Rotterdam Conservatory and finished her studies in 1998. From 1994-1998 she joined the Dutch quintet Bailongo. This tango ensemble perfected itself in Buenos Aires with famous tango musicians and invited Rodolfo Mederos to play in the Netherlands and Germany with them.
From 1998 she played in different ensembles such as Juan José Mosalini’s Grand Orchester de Tango and as soloist with the Lausanne Chamber Orchestra, the SWR Orchestra and the WDR Rundfunkorchester. In 2004 she played with tenor Juan Diego Florez and the BBC Symphony Orchestra as part of BBC Proms at Royal Albert Hall.

From 1999 Helena composes music for plays, dance and radio plays and works as a jounralist for German radios such as WDR, SWR, DLF etc.
In 2013 she created in Sigonce (Haute Provence) a cultural association called “Bandalena”. This non-profit organization later created many cultural events in Sigonce and in the Comuneate des Comunes in the Alpes de Haute Provence with the support of guitarist Rob Bangert and other local and European artists.

In 2017 Helena obtains an order of composition by the Swiss cultural foundation “Pro Helvetia” for a quartet composed of Santur, Saxophone, Cello and Bandoneon. The creation of this work takes place in August 2017 at the Alpentöne Festival, Altdorf and is broadcast by radio and television Swiss and German.

In 2018/2019 Helena participates through “Bandalena” to a project supported by the European Community and creates with Italian, Portuguese and Croatian partners the multimedia show “Butterflies on flowers, diaries, lyrics and music of Europe du’68 “.

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Rob Bangert – Guitar, arranger

Rob Bangert studied classical guitar and musicology in Amsterdam. He also studied at the School of Popular Music in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He traveled the world where he gave concerts in many and various ensembles. He has also followed many classes by the greatest guitarists of our time, such as Manuel Barrueco and David Russel.

In addition to his music life, he runs one of the most innovative companies in the Netherlands, Artiance, Arts Center. This institution focuses on the development of young talents in the fields of music, theater, dance and visual arts. Artiance is currently working on several major international projects.

Innovation is a keyword for Rob. He designed new forms of a concert. Forms in which several disciplines are combined.