Newsletter December 2008 & Jan 2009
22 December 2008
Another successful Music Festival!
The highly successful 3rd Cape Town International Summer Music Festival ended on 18 December, when one of the world’s foremost composers, Krzysztof Penderecki, conducted African premières of his “Largo for Cello” and Piano Concerto “Resurrection”. This year’s festival was the largest one yet, with 18 concerts at various venues throughout Cape Town and Stellenbosch.
Cape Town music lovers do not have to wait long for more concerts – the Summer Symphony Season starts on 15 January 2009, while there is also a Gala Night at the Proms Concert on 30 January and a performance of Carmina Burana at Kirstenbosch on 22 February.
2009 Summer Symphony Season
The season consists of concerts on 15, 22, 29 January and 5 February in the City Hall, with the CPO’s Principal Guest Conductor, Owain Arwel Hughes, on the podium:
On 15 January the exciting young pianist Pallavi Mahidhara plays Saint-Saëns’ Piano Concerto No. 2. The programme also includes Sibelius’ Second Symphony and Dvořák’s Carnival Overture.
On 22 January Welsh cellist Thomas Carroll plays Haydn’s Cello Concerto in C major, while the programme also includes Tchaikovsky’s Romeo and Juliet Fantasy Overture and Shostakovich’s Fifth Symphony.
On 29 January the excellent young local pianist John Ntsepe returns to Cape Town to perform Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No. 2. Also on this programme is Prelude for the Orchestra” – a work by Arwel Hughes, father of the conductor. The concert concludes with Brahms’ Second Symphony.
On 5 February, the programme starts with Dvořák’s Symphonic Variations, Op.78. The soloists are the award-winning Hungarian violinists Barnabás Kelemen and his equally talented wife Katalin Kokas (viola). Together they play Mozart’s Sinfonia Concertante for Violin, Viola and Orchestra, and thereafter Keleman also performs Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto. This concert is repeated at Oude Libertas the next evening (Friday 6 February).
Booking for season ticket holders is already open, while the booking period for new season ticket holders starts on 29 December. Single tickets go on sale as of 5 January 2009 from Computicket and Artscape Dial-a-Seat (021) 421 7695.
Conductor’s competition: Entries close on 1 January 2009
Entries for the first Len van Zyl Conductors’ Competition close on 1 January 2009.
This competition is open to South African nationals who are under the age of 33 on 1 January 2009. Participants compete for a single prize: a trip to the United States with a month’s internship with the Philadelphia Orchestra (under the directorship of Charles Dutoit) and another two months in Chicago with Prof. Victor Yampolsky and the Northwestern Orchestra. The winner will also be given the opportunity to conduct the Cape Philharmonic Orchestra on his/her return from the trip.
The competition is administered and run by the CPO, but has wide national support, including from the Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra and the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra.
More information and entry forms are available here on the website: click here.
Gala Night at the Proms and Summer Sunset Concert
· On 30 January, Richard Cock conducts a programme of popular classics during the Gala Night at the Proms concert in the City Hall. The soloist is the famous English soprano Lesley Garrett.
· The Summer Sunset Concert at Kirstenbosch takes place on 22 February. Rudolf de Beer conducts the CPO with the City of Tygerberg Choir and soloists Nokrismesi Skota, Mlamli Lalapantsi and Musawenkosi Ngqungwana for a performance of Carl Orff’s Carmina Burana.
Autumn and Winter Seasons
For those who want to do advance planning for the year, here is some brief information about the CPO’s Autumn and Winter Symphony seasons:
The Autumn Symphony Season 2009 consists of concerts on 2, 9, 16, 23 and 30 April 2009. The conductors during this season are Pieter Daniel, Bjorn Bantok and Victor Yampolsky, while the soloists are Gustavo Romero (piano), Pieter Daniel (violin) Wendy Warner (cello), Maxim Rysanov (viola) and Lukáš Vondráček (piano). See Calendar for programmes. The booking period for season ticket holders starts on 20 February, while new season ticket holders can start booking on 6 March and single tickets go on sale as of 16 March.
The Winter Symphony Season 2009
consists of concerts on 11, 18 and 25 June 2009. The conductors are Jonas Alber and Bernhard Gueller, while the soloists are Avigail Bushakovitz (violin) Katherine Foxcroft (piano), Golda Schultz (soprano), Pretty Yende (soprano) and Mlamli Lalapantsi (tenor). The City of Tygerberg Choir will participate in the 18 June concert for performances of Mendelssohn’s choral works Psalm No. 95 (“Kommt, lasst uns anbeten”) and Symphony No. 2 (entitled “Lobgesang” -“Song of Praise”). The booking period for season ticket holders starts on 28 April, while new season ticket holders can start booking on 13 May and single tickets go on sale as of 25 May.
Orchestra Librarians’ conference: Cape ideas welcomed
CPO Orchestra Librarian Daniel Neal attended an important meeting of orchestra librarians from the major collections in South Africa. The meeting was hosted in Johannesburg by conductor Graham Scott and also attended by Diana Bell (KwaZulu Natal Philharmonic Orchestra), Suzette Lombard (SABC), Frans Rossouw, (State Theatre, Pretoria), Jelena Zsadanyi (former librarian of the State Theatre) and Elsabe Laubscher (director of the Johannesburg Music Initiative).
The major topics addressed were the potential rehousing of the State Theatre Orchestra Library and the new national database catalogue. In August this year the State Theatre management had announced a potential plan to sell the orchestra library, and the various librarians wanted to hear how the Western Cape Orchestra Trust had been set up and structured. Daniel delivered a report from trustee Christoff Pauw, as well as a report from UCT-SA College of Music chief librarian Julie Strauss, who had put together a user-friendly software package for a national catalogue of orchestra music collections. It now seems likely that the Cape Town approach will be followed in Pretoria to ensure the survival of that wonderful library.