Newsletter February 2008

 In Newsletter Archive

Newsletter 06 February 2008

Summer Symphony Season and other engagements

The Cape Philharmonic’s Principal Guest Conductor Owain Arwel Hughes will be conducting all four concerts of the Summer Symphony Season starting on 7 February. The soloists for the season are
the Cyprus-born pianist Martino Tirimo who is well-known for his interpretations of Beethoven and who will play Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 4 on 7 February;
the highly-rated Chinese violinist Bin Huang playing Sibelius’ Violin Concerto on 14 February;
local singers Pretty Yende (soprano) and Musawenkosi Ngqungwana (baritone) who will appear with the New Apostolic Church Choir during the performances on Thursday 21 February (City Hall), Saturday 23 February (Oude Libertas Amphitheatre) and Sunday 24 February (NAC Auditorium) of Brahms’ Ein deutsches Requiem;
the award-winning South African piano duo Cara Hesse and Laura Pauna, who will perform Bruch’s Concerto for Two Pianos, and Stellenbosch organist Zorada Temmingh, who will play during the performance of Saint-Saëns’ Symphony No. 3 in C minor (“Organ” Symphony) on 28 February.
In addition to those mentioned above, other major works included in the programmes for the series include Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 12 (14 February) and Schubert’s Symphony No. 8 (28 February). Details about the individual concerts are available under the Concert Calender.
During March the orchestra will be performing at Vergelegen (Starlight Classics, March 15 and 16) and at Kirstenbosch (Sundown Classics, 23 March).
In a future edition of the newsletter, we will publish a preview of the Autumn Symphony season starting on 8 May.

Q&A with the CPO’s Outreach and Education Manager

The CPO’s Outreach and Education Manager, Henriette Weber, recently visited music education institutions in the Netherlands and Chicago, US. She shared some thoughts on her experiences;
What was the purpose of your visit?
Henriette Weber: My intention was to visit as many different music education institutions in Holland and Chicago to ascertain where our own outreach and education programme is, what needs to be done and how we could achieve these goals within a proudly South African context.
What were the highlights of your trip?
HW: In Holland it was attending the Marines’ concerts in the Concertgebouw in Rotterdam, the Dutch Brass Band Championships in Groningen, visiting the Schoonhoven music school and attending Brass Band Schoonhoven rehearsals. In Chicago I attended concerts by the Chicago Symphony Orchestra and the Chicago Symphony Brass and visited schools offering music at Wheeling and Wheaton High Schools. I was also a guest of Northwestern University School of Music, with Prof Victor Yampolsky (whom we all know well here in Cape Town) as my host. I attended many meetings that could result in future student exchanges, funding possibilities for CPO education and teachers and conductors offering assistance and service to our programme.

Schools Programme

Through its Outreach and Education Programme, the CPO takes live symphonic music to the previously disadvantaged communities in the Western Cape.
Led by CPO’s Outreach and Education Planner, Alexander Fokkens, this year’s Schools Programme catering for learners from grades 4 to 7, took place over eight days in January at the Bishop Lavis High School and attracted learners from 11 schools.
“We want to keep on rotating this experience among different schools. Hopefully it will generate awareness and interest – and hopefully some of the children will attend our music workshops, master-classes and one-on-one tuition,” says Fokkens.
The techniques to make it an interactive experience for the learners include giving some of them the opportunity to discover what it feels like to work with the orchestra as conductor, while others get to play an instrument. The learners are also asked to identify flags of different countries and on getting the answer right, the orchestra performs a piece of work from that country. Some of the music played includes melodies that learners may have heard as part of the soundtracks of films or on TV.
Fokkens says all of this certainly makes the music more accessible: “The big idea is to make them realise where the things they know from television come from.”

Staff News in brief

Eddie McLean joined the CPO as a tutti cellist from 1 February. We wish him a fulfilling career at the orchestra.
Kristiyan Chernev (the present Sub-Principal) successfully auditioned for the Principal Cello position, which he also took up from 1 February, after Peter Martens left to join the staff at Stellenbosch University.
Colette Botha (2nd violin) got married in January to Louis Niemand. We wish them a long and happy life together.

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