Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

Beethoven from Houstoun Concert 4 – recycle plus renewal….

By , 30/06/2013
Those of us who are regular concertgoers can’t really help ourselves – as we get to know the work of certain musicians whom we’ve heard at various times over the years, we form opinions of them as artists and of their work. And, contrary to the popular axiom, if this work is of a consistently high standard, it’s a case of familiarity giving rise to admiration and respect, and... read more

Pataka piano recital pleases

A brilliant programme played by a brilliant young Wellington pianist greeted an almost full room on Sunday.  All the music was played from memory and extremely competently; in many cases, superbly well.  Programme notes were very informative, yet brief. Problems were to do with the room – painted walls on two sides of the piano and a low ceiling made for undesirable triple fortes at times, and in the opening... read more

Tremendous panache from performers in Verdi’s epic Requiem

Verdi’s Requiem was presented last Saturday evening with tremendous panache by a huge group of musicians who all seemed to revel in the privilege of performing this epic work. Their enthusiasm was palpable, in a way that communicated itself to the audience and created a gala atmosphere that was further enhanced by the wonderful lighting of the rich timber work in the dome . The huge range of dynamic... read more

Old and new, far and near, from the New Zealand String Quartet

It was good to see ‘our own’ quartet back in the Sunday afternoon series, after an absence of several years.  Particularly, it was pleasing to see that Helene Pohl was able to play with all the fingers of her left hand, having now fully recovered from her accident in February. As usual, members of the Quartet introduced the items in an informative manner, illustrating themes and passages on their instruments... read more

J.S.Bach at Paekakariki

By , 23/06/2013
(based on notes prepared for a review on RNZ Concert's"Upbeat" with Eva Radich) I'm certain that Bach would have been highly intrigued and perhaps tickled pink to think of his music being played in a place with the name of Paekakariki! It is alway a great pleasure to go to Paekakariki to hear music being played. Firstly, the surroundings, especially on a good day, are spectacular - and of course, if... read more

Brio’s fantastic lunchtime explorations

By , 19/06/2013
Fantasiereisen is not, of course, the word for a German bakery, but instead, the title chosen for the most recent of Vocal Ensemble Brio's enterprising programmes. Presented at St.Andrew's as part of the Lunchtime Concert Series, it featured music by Wagner, R. Strauss and Mozart, a kind of kaleidoscopic collection of operatic, vocal and instrumental works given this wonderful title (in English, this time) Fantastic Journeys. One or two... read more

Valedictions from the Tokyo Quartet

By , 15/06/2013
Going to hear practically any concert is a kind of privilege for the listener - especially when one thinks about the "coming together" of the different things that contribute to a live performance. The "here-and-now" of it all has its own kind of spontaneously-charged electricity. Somehow, it doesn't feel quite the same when listening to the same music played on a recording, and not even when the performers are... read more

Pieces of eight from Nota Bene

Once again, a concert of innovative programming from Nota Bene.  This time, it was made up of pieces written for eight parts, mainly in the form of two choirs.  The result was a performance full of animation, with interesting and appealing music well sung, providing enjoyment for the audience, which pretty well filled the venue.  The dates of the compositions ranged from sixteenth century through to twentieth century. All the... read more

Antipodean stargazing and planetwatching from the NZSO

By , 14/06/2013
"Matariki" - the "eyes of god", are said to be the stars belonging to a cluster (known elsewhere as the "Pleiades") which were formed by the fierce God of the Winds, Tāwhirimātea, who tore his eyes out and threw them into the heavens in anger at the separation of his parents the Earth and Sky. Somewhat less overtly savage is the account in Greek mythology of the seven daughters of... read more

NZSM students stringing things together

Yet more impressive playing from students.  First up was Blythe Press, who has been playing with the NZSO as a contract player.  He played the allegro from Mozart’s Violin Concerto in D, K.218, from memory.  This glorious music was played perhaps a little too judiciously – the odd rubato, apart from that before the cadenza, might have been good. However, the full, bright sound and fast tempo (compared with some... read more

Panorama Theme by Themocracy