Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

The NZSO “reclaims the night” for Baroque composers at St.Andrew’s on-The-Terrace, Wellington

By , 08/06/2019
To my great relief the NZSO abandoned the idea of presenting this, the second concert of their Baroque Series, in Wellington Cathedral, the first concert there having been a mixed blessing of an affair, with the building’s cavernous acoustic the main impediment to enjoyment of the music. The strictures of the Capital’s current “earthquake-risk” regulations regarding many of its buildings has made finding a venue for concerts involving either... read more

Martin Riseley in the second splendid recital of Bach solo violin sonatas and partitas, benefit for St Andrew’s organ restoration

By , 07/06/2019
At one of last year’s lunchtime concerts at St Andrew’s Martin Riseley played one each of Bach’s solo partitas and sonatas, and it led to the suggestion that he might play all six of them. And so he did: he played the first three last month and here were the last three. This second recital was a generous benefit concert to assist with the restoration of the pipe organ; and... read more

Orchestra Wellington – gone vinyl to splendid effect with live Beethoven

By , 06/06/2019
I was there at the 2018 concert when conductor Marc Taddei and Orchestra Wellington launched their ground-breaking classical recording release of two Beethoven Symphonies, recorded “live” at separate Michael Fowler Centre concerts the previous year – and what was more, caught on two splendidly appointed vinyl discs which were displayed most tellingly to a visibly gobsmacked and positively enthusiastic audience. Being an originally-pressed vinyl aficionado, I failed to take... read more

Restorative music from the Restoration, performed by “The Queen’s Closet”

By , 01/06/2019
A well-ordered programme, a cornucopia of colourful-sounding instruments, a group of skilled, expressive players and a relaxed, spontaneous-sounding presentation whose varied amalgam of fascinating and engaging sounds ensured a most attractive and resounding early evening’s music-making were the sure-fire ingredients of this concert from the early music group “The Queen’s Closet”. The ensemble’s name is derived from an eponymously-titled room found in a National Trust house located in Richmond... read more

Mozart the wonderful vehicle for supporting an important charity from Karori Classics

By , 31/05/2019
This third concert in the 2019 series, Karori Classics was a benefit concert for Cystic Fibrosis New Zealand, for it’s a wretched condition that afflicts the child of two of the players, Emma Brewerton and Lyndsay Mountfort. We were sorry to have missed the earlier two concerts; the first, on 1 March, by duet pianists Beth Chen and Nicole Chao, known as Duo Enharmonics; and the second on 22 March... read more

Stroma enhances Wellington with music inspired by where sea meets sky

By , 30/05/2019
Stroma is a mixed chamber music ensemble drawn from musicians of the NZSO. It performs contemporary experimental music. This programme included music by New Zealand, American, Irish, French, and Icelandic composers, but in particular, it honoured the 80th birthday of John Rimmer, one of New Zealand's most iconic composers. The programme started with fog horns, recorded in San Francisco Bay. A brass sextet of two horns, two trombones and two... read more

Delightful St Andrew’s recital from NZSM piano students: Bach, Haydn, Chopin, Brahms, Debussy, Prokofiev and Henry Cowell

By , 29/05/2019
Though Middle C has been catching the weekly lunchtime concerts at St Andrew’s pretty regularly, we have sometimes been a bit neglectful in writing about them. This one was harder to duck. Student recitals almost always reveal a player or two of considerable distinction, in addition to which we have the experience of watching live performers playing music, a phenomenon that is becoming ever more rare, as disembodied versions of... read more

Chamber Music Hutt Valley celebrates 40 years – no more appropriately than with the Amici Ensemble

By , 27/05/2019
What a surprise to discover that Rossini’s youthful Sonate a Quattro No.1 in F Major was here masquerading as a wind quartet! – in fact, I was going to add, “in true Rossinian fashion” before I discovered that the arranger was one Frederic Berr, a clarinettist who similarly refurbished for wind quartet no less than five of Rossini’s youthful “String Sonatas” , and provided a sixth from an “Andante... read more

Kiwa Quartet takes enjoyable, interesting journey through 125 years of quartet repertoire for Wellington Chamber Music

By , 26/05/2019
Listening to string quartet music is a delightful way of spending a Sunday afternoon. We have had the privilege of hearing three excellent string quartets over the last three weeks, the New Zealand String Quartet, the Aroha Quartet, and now the Kiwa Quartet.  It is fortunate for Wellington to have such an abundance of talent around. The Kiwa Quartet was formed in 2015 as part of a project supported by... read more

Orchestra Wellington’s triumphant concert of two last completed works by great composers

By , 25/05/2019
This promised to be a major concert, and as soon as the first arresting sounds of the Jupiter Symphony filled the MFC, I felt assured that it was probably the most important concert of Orchestra Wellington’s year. And so I scanned the spaces above the orchestra to assure myself that it was being recorded; and I was dismayed to see no sign of RNZ Concert’s microphones. In the light of... read more

Panorama Theme by Themocracy