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Military Music Service of the National People's Army
Militärischer Musikdienst der Nationale Volksarmee
Bundesarchiv Bild 183-N1005-0046, Berlin, 25. Jahrestag DDR-Gründung, Zapfenstreich.jpg
Active 1956; 65 years ago (1956)
Disbanded 2 November 1990; ago (1990-11-02)
Country  East Germany
Branch Coat of arms of NVA (East Germany).svg National People's Army (NPA)
Type Military Band
Headquarters East Berlin
Commanders
Final Generalmusikdirektor (General Music Director) Colonel Heinz Häcker
Notable
commanders
Colonel Gerhard Baumann
Major Bernd Zivny (Central Band of the NPA Land Forces)
Captain Ludwig Schmidt (Band of the National People's Navy)
Helmut Sommer (Central Band of the Ministry of Internal Affairs)[1]

The Military Music Service of the National People's Army (Militärischer Musikdienst der Nationale Volksarmee in German) was made up of the Military Bands of the Nationale Volksarmee and the Corps of Drums of the Military Music Service.

Constituent bands[edit | edit source]

Central Band of the NPA Land Forces[edit | edit source]

The Central Band of the NVA Land Forces (also known as the Central Band of the NPA, Zentralorchester der NVA) was no reorganization such as the Stabsmusikkorps of the Bundeswehr, but it was taken over in 1956 by the KVP and at this time could look back on a seven -year history as a symphony orchestra or symphonic wind band. Of all the active bands, it was the most senior band of the entire NPA.

The development of the Band ran until 1959 in normal tracks and without special features. Then Major Gerhard Baumann, former director of the Schwerin People's Police Band, came to Berlin via Leipzig and took over the leadership of the ZO from the hands of Major Hans-Helmut Hunger.[2] In the "era Baumann", which lasted until 1983, the Central Band of the NVA became a term for solid military music and an extraordinary ensemble of sound. However, the uniqueness of the orchestra was not based solely on its position as the largest and most important music corps of military music of the NVA, because the official music - up to extraordinary representative performances - was, as with all top brass corps of a state, integrated into predetermined framework conditions, albeit Here, of course, his style and the treatment of the profession not only make the connoisseur sit up. In 1983, Colonel Gerhard Baumann handed over the baton to Heinz Häcker, who led the ZO until the time of reunification.

The fate of the ZO was ultimately no different than that of the NVA as a whole. As a full blown Bundeswehr band in its final months the central band was disbanded under its last director, Major Bernd Zivny, who performed the band's final Berlin concert on 2 November 1990, the only time it performed wearing Bundeswehr uniforms as part of the unification of the band services of the former two Germanies, it was rebadged briefly as the local band for the now reunified Berlin city garrison.[3]

Band of the National People's Navy[edit | edit source]

The Band of the National People's Navy (Musikkorps der Volksmarine) was the only band supporting the ceremonial activities of the Volksmarine.[4][5]

Central Band of the National People's Army Air Forces[edit | edit source]

The Central Band of the National People's Army Air Forces (Orchester der Luftstreitkräfte der Nationalen Volksarmee) supported the ceremonial activities of the Air Forces of the National People's Army, and reported thus to the Kommando LSK/LV in East Berlin.

Band of the Border Troops[edit | edit source]

The Band of the Border Troops of the German Democratic Republic (Orchester der Grenztruppen der DDR) was the official band supporting the ceremonial activities of the Border Troops of the German Democratic Republic, a directly reporting agency of the Ministry of National Defense. It was affiliated to the MMS-NPA owing to its status as a former service branch of the NVA itself from 1961 to 1973.

Regimental Band and Corps of Drums of the Friedrich Engels Guard Regiment[edit | edit source]

The Regimental Band and Corps of Drums of the Friedrich Engels Guard Regiment (Musikkorps und Spielmannszug der Wachregiment Friedrich Engels) was the official regimental band of the Friedrich Engels Guard Regiment, the official guard of honour regiment of the NVA, which served during ceremonial occasions like state visits, guard mountings at the Neue Wache, military parades, oath taking ceremonies of new conscripts, the Großer Zapfenstreich and wreath laying ceremonies. It also supported the activities of the Guard Regiment Hugo Eberlein, the non-public duties guard unit of the Ministry of National Defence.

Central Band of the Ministry of Internal Affairs[edit | edit source]

The Central Band of the Ministry of Internal Affairs (Zentrales Orchester des Ministeriums des Innern) supported the ceremonial activities of the Ministry of the Interior of the GDR.

Regimental Band and Corps of Drums of the Felix Dzerzhinsky Guards Regiment[edit | edit source]

The Band and Corps of Drums of the Felix Dzerzhinsky Guards Regiment (Musikkorps und Spielmannszug des Wachregiments "Feliks Dzierzynski") was the official regimental band of the Felix Dzerzhinsky Guards Regiment, the armed internal security regiment within the Ministry of the Interior.

Generalmusikdirektors[edit | edit source]

Gerhard Baumann in 1971.

The band has been led by 3 Generalmusikdirektors (General Music Directors) over its more than 30-year history.

  • Colonel Gerhard Baumann (October 4, 1973 - November 18, 1983)
  • Colonel Heinz Häcker (November 18, 1983 - November 2, 1990)

Gallery[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

External links[edit | edit source]

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