Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

Tasman String Quartet

By , 31/05/2009

Bartok was originally to have been Mozart, in this concert, a change obliquely referred to by the violist, leaning conspiratorially towards the audience just before the music began, and warning us not to think their Mozart horribly out of tune, or words to that effect! As it turned out, the Quartet’s playing of Bartok’s Third String Quartet was beautifully-nuanced throughout, poised and lyrical, the “special effects” such... read more

NZ School of Music Concerto Competition

By , 29/05/2009
The annual concerto competition, formerly of the Victoria University School of Music, now the New Zealand School, ought to be a much more high profile event than it has ordinarily been. There is a very good school orchestra and the City Council would doubtless offer the Michael Fowler Centre at a peppercorn rent for a concert of such... read more

HAYDN – New Zealand School of Music Students

By , 27/05/2009
Amongst the great composers I couldn’t think of a better lunchtime companion than Josef Haydn, judging from what’s come down to us regarding the man and his personality that’s to be found in his music, with its strength, candid directness and wry humour. I would expect to come away from such an encounter with the great man totally charmed, highly amused and utterly humbled in the presence... read more

Salzmann and Irons at Waikanae

By , 24/05/2009
Composer/pianist Gao Ping was to have played in this concert, but had to cancel, so his place was instead taken by Diedre Irons, necessitating a programme change in the original plan – but considering the calibre of the artists involved in the rearrangement, no-one could possibly have felt hard done by. The programme was a ‘cello-fancier’s dream, beginning with one of those iconic works for the solo instrument, a... read more

NZ String Quartet and bassist Ikematsu in Sunday concert

By , 21/05/2009

I believe the audience for this concert in the Ilott Theatre was a little larger than had been expected, perhaps due to the presence of another contributor, NZSO principal double bass player, Hiroshi Ikematsu. Many will have heard him in concert with chamber groups and word could have got out that he was a player of remarkable accomplishment and talent.

New Zealand School of Music Classical Voice Students

By , 20/05/2009
Recitals such as these can amount to less than the sum of their parts if not organised and prepared for well; and the announcement at the concert's beginning that several of the students had colds as a result of excessively wintry weather didn't do anything to lift expectations of what was to follow to any great extent. However, what we should have taken into account was the enthusiasm and... read more

NZSO with Steven Osborne in Shostakovich, Beethoven, Webern

By , 15/05/2009

There were many NZSO followers who were sorry when Matthias Bamert, who had several years as assistant chief conductor of the orchestra, did not become Music Director. However, he maintains his earlier, highly fruitful relationship. On paper, the programme looked a little odd; Webern has never become a much loved composer, apart from among a small band that sees music as an analytical challenge and professes to derive... read more

Cantoris – Amaryllis and Absalom

By , 09/05/2009
Cantoris is one of a number of Wellington-based choirs whose activities serve to bring to local audiences a richly diverse range of the choral repertoire in committed and skilful performances. St. Peter’s Church on Willis St. provided a picturesque and elegant setting for this, the first Cantoris concert for 2009, featuring madrigals, sacred and secular, with one’s pleasure further enhanced by a beautifully-printed programme containing texts and commentaries about... read more

L’Italiana in Algeri from the NBR New Zealand Opera

By , 09/05/2009

The first of the two staged productions from New Zealand Opera in 2009 made a hit of an opera that is not really in the top twenty, even in Italy.

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