Supported by generous help from the Adam Foundation

The Creation of Music Futures: object lesson in enterprise

By , 02/08/2015
This post refers to our review of the concert of 26 July promoted by Music Futures, featuring young Wellington musicians, some of whom were involved with the current Chamber Music contest staged annually by Chamber Music New Zealand, and supported by the New Zealand Community Trust. (The National Finale was held on Sunday 2 August, and was won by the Wellington piano trio which had played in the concert of... read more

Music Futures’ praiseworthy venture with young Wellington musicians

By , 26/07/2015
This was the second annual concert by a group set up last year to help young musicians in Wellington. The organisation exists to provide performance opportunities, access to masterclasses and workshops, mentoring by professional musicians, financial awards and the hire of musical instruments. The choir which opened the concert showed one of the advantages of co-education while at the same time being in nicely segregated institutions; the two colleges virtually... read more

Kapiti Chamber Choir tackles highly ambitious all-Jewish programme including a major Bloch work

By , 19/07/2015
Two hours of composers who, I imagine, would have been no more than names to most, even those with a fairly good knowledge of 20th century music, might have looked a bit unappetising to an audience for choral music. So to start, I was surprised to find the church pretty full. And though there was nothing to suggest that other than Jewish music would be in the programme, I rather expected... read more

The Apprentice, La Mer, Ibert’s flute concerto and an enchanting francophone premiere from National Youth Orchestra

By , 02/07/2015
The National Youth Orchestra has generally played a major symphony in the second part of its main annual outing (and this is its 56th year). They’ve included Mahler’s First and Seventh, Tchaikovsky’s Fourth and Fifth, Shostakovich’s Tenth, Rachmaninov’s Second, Brahms’s First and Second, as well as Bartok’s Concerto for Orchestra, Also sprach Zarathustra, many taxing concertos and other large and challenging works. Back in 2007, they played La Mer... read more

Defences overwhelmed by seductive songs from Nota Bene under Julian Raphael

By , 27/06/2015
Nota Bene, founded over ten years ago by Christine Argyle, has always been a slightly unorthodox choir, perhaps ‘eclectic’ and ‘adventurous’ might be better words: they often veer towards the not-so-heavy repertoire whether jazz, quasi-pop, art songs, Renaissance polyphony, folk or “World” music, with special attention to New Zealand composers, and not averse to a touch of religiose sentiment. It’s also a choir whose performances are marked by enthusiasm... read more

Unmissable violin sonata programme from APO’s Canadian concertmaster and Sarah Watkins

By , 21/06/2015
The violinist’s name would have been new to Wellingtonians – the recently appointed Concertmaster of the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra; the pianist however, is very well known. But the audience was disappointing: see comments in my Coda. I think this programme, entirely of worthwhile, interesting works, but containing only one familiar, major work, might have seemed missable to non-subscribers, unless driven by Lilburn-loyalty or special love of Bartok, and who would... read more

Orchestra Wellington in irresistable, largely Russian programme plus multi-cultural esoterica

By , 20/06/2015
Not content with the inevitable attraction of the complete Tchaikovsky symphony cycle, plus one of the most exciting piano concertos of the 20th century, Taddei added an indefinable something whose appeal might have been in any of a dozen varied musical or artistic realms. A vocal piece by a young composer, Leila Adu, of mixed New Zealand and Ghanaian birth, with its roots in those places as well as... read more

NZCT chamber music competitors come down town to St Andrew’s with interesting lunchtime treat

By , 17/06/2015
Here at St Andrew’s was the piano trio which had played the Moderato movement from Smetana’s Trio in G minor at the concert at the end of the NZSM Queen’s Birthday Chamber Music Weekend on 1 June (see the review of that date). What a treat to hear them play it again! And I’d wondered whether the group would now fill the rest of the programme with other pieces... read more

Praiseworthy, adventurous concert from Tawa Orchestra moves into foreign parts

By , 14/06/2015
My third orchestral concert this weekend established a healthy restoration of normality in music making. The two Inkinen Festival concerts from the NZSO represented music as performed by a hundred or so of the most talented and polished musicians in New Zealand. But apart from those, there are many thousand who devote some of their energy and time to pursuing the same activities; some of them do it for unapologetic... read more

Marvellous Wagnerian farewell (Siegfried and Götterdämmerung) for conductor Inkinen and his Symphony Orchestra

By , 12/06/2015
I hadn’t heard Eva Radich’s interview with soprano Christine Goerke on Upbeat before the concert (and that has a bit to do with the unfortunate shift of the programme’s time from midday to 2pm). But I heard it on Saturday morning. It was one of those wonderful, animated, intelligent, thoroughly prepared interviews that Eva invariably achieves with articulate and gifted people that reveals many of the physical and psychological... read more

Panorama Theme by Themocracy