The name NoordWest (i.e. Northwest) refers to the duo's musical repertoire and, coincidentally, also to where in the Netherlands they are based: Els lives in Leeuwarden in the north, Thomas in Leiden in the west.
Both play as folk musicians in several quite different groups. As Duo NoordWest they have over the past 12 years built up a vast repertoire of dance and listening music from Scandinavia, with an emphasis on Swedish music.

In several hundreds of sets and arrangements of traditional melodies they combine a range of authentic instruments: violin, härjedalspipa and seljefløjta / sälgflöjt (Scandinavian shepherd flutes) and dalasäckpipa (Swedish bagpipes), diatonic accordeon (melodeon) with concertina, chromatic accordeon, various recorders and even a baroque trombone. Their aim is to play the music in the traditional way as well as combining other styles, thus giving full credit to the music's nature of a living tradition.
They prefer to play without amplification for better contact with audience and/or dancers.

They both travel to Scandinavia regularly to collect and learn more tunes, dances and styles, to gather more background information and to meet musicians and luthiers. In the Netherlands they play for (mostly Scandinavian) weddings, for dance evenings, in small theaters with a program of music and stories, at midsummer and midwinter events, ('Scandi') fairs and markets, etc.
They also play for Lillan, an Amsterdam based Swedish dance group that does dance performances and organises informal Swedish dance evenings.

Over the last few years Duo NoordWest gave a lot of workshops Swedish dance for beginners and intermediate level: in the Friesland region at first but now in many places in the Netherlands. A daytime workshop is usually complemented with a Swedish dance evening (often combined with 'Balfolk') to bring the newly learned dances into practice.

Contact: info # duo-noordwest.nl  
  (attention!!: please replace # by @ )  
     
Els Doekes Nieuwe Hollanderdijk 3-b
 
  8932 ES Leeuwarden, Nederland  
  tel. +31 (0)58 2139614  
     
Thomas Steenweg Achterstraat 52  
  4011 ER Zoelen, Nederland
 
  tel. +31 (0)344 681060