Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

An Eastern European smorgasbord at St.Andrew’s

By , 23/06/2022
We are very fortunate in Wellington to have artists of the calibre of Robert Ibell and Rachel Thomson. They are both very versatile musicians. Ibell is the cellist of the Aroha Quartet, a past member of the NZSO, and now he plays with a number of different ensembles. Rachel Thomson is an accompanist, associated with many local artists. They presented a program of largely unfamiliar works from Eastern Europe... read more

The long way to Bohemia

By , 19/06/2022
A cold grey afternoon in the middle of winter. But the programme looked interesting: a Czech club sandwich with a slice of Bowater. The New Zealand Chamber Soloists have a history of commissioning new works. The work by Helen Bowater was commissioned in 2020 as part of their ‘Seven by Seven’ project: seven works by seven New Zealand women composers, lasting seven minutes, with support from Creative New Zealand... read more

Goldner Quartet – old friends return to Wellington

By , 17/06/2022
Chamber Music is back after a long break, and a glorious return it was. The Goldner Quartet were once regular visitors, but it was nine years since they were last here. The four members of the quartet had played together for 27 years, rare among touring string quartets, and they developed an understanding over the years and a wealth of musical experience that places them among the best quartets... read more

Rhapsody and Rapture

By , 11/06/2022
‘It’s all about Clara Schumann,’ said Marc Taddei, Orchestra Wellington’s conductor. Brahms wrote his Alto Rhapsody for the wedding of Clara’s third daughter, Julie, in 1869. The second work on the programme was written by Clara Weick, as she then was, between the ages of 13 and 15. And Robert Schumann’s Symphony No 4, written in the first rapturous year of their marriage, has the word ‘Clara’ musically encoded throughout One... read more

A solo tour-de-force from violinist Monique Lapins

By , 08/06/2022
I left this concert on a high, and started composing my notes and comments on the way home in the bus! One violin, one solitary violinist at the centre of the stage, and a program of music largely unfamiliar to concert audiences; this promised to be an exceptional musical experience. Monique Lapins is a very versatile musician, a member of the NZ String Quartet, of the Ghost Trio with Gabriela... read more

Two centuries of Spanish keyboard music

By , 02/06/2022
Solo piano concerts are rare these days, apart from the occasional lunch time recitals, and Wellington Chamber Music should be complimented on featuring this concert. Lorelle McNaughton studied in Spain with  renowned Spanish pianists and is something of a specialist in performing Spanish music. She has toured Australia and New Zealand with a programme of Spanish piano works and this concert is part of a nationwide tour taking her... read more

“Packed (and) buzzing” audience acclaim Wellington Chamber Orchestra’s 50th Anniversary Concert

The Alan Gibbs Centre was packed to the gills, and buzzing with celebratory vibes, for this ambitious concert celebrating the 50th anniversary of the WCO. The stage as well was crowded and festive, with past members of the Orchestra making a return to its ranks for this gala programme. In keeping with the mood and the occasion, the programme opened with Shostakovich’s Festive Overture (Op. 96). Written... read more

Late afternoon sunlight

By , 01/05/2022
This was the first concert of a new season for Wellington Chamber Music, and the organisers must have been anxious. The pandemic has changed audiences and the business of giving concerts. Would they come? They needn’t have worried. St Andrew’s was pleasantly full for this delightful concert, featuring Rachel Vernon on clarinet. The Aroha Quartet have been regular performers here over the years – they were founded in 2004 – and... read more

Wellington Youth Orchestra – an appealing programme delivered with rich orchestral sound

By , 30/04/2022
This was a delightful program of very appealing music, appropriate for the young musicians of the Wellington Youth Orchestra. The orchestra has grown in size since I last reviewed their concert in 2019, when they were short of strings. This time there were 26 violins, 5 violas, 6 cellos, 2 basses, and a full complement of winds, brass and percussion, and they produced a rich orchestral sound. The program... read more

Music of our time – Duo Enharmonics and Ensemble Gȏ, at St.Andrew’s

By , 20/04/2022
This was a varied concert of mainly short works by contemporary composers, two New Zealanders, Ross Harris and John Psathas, one Turkish, Fazil Say, and two American, Paul Schoenfeld and Glenn Stallcop. They are hardly household names, but this short concert of about 60 minutes gave us a glimpse of what composers of the present time are writing, although each of the five pieces on the programme were quite... read more

Panorama Theme by Themocracy