Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

Celebrating the 200th anniversary: Haydn and the New Zealand String Quartet

By , 29/08/2009
Peter Mechen has written a review of the first of the two concerts by the New Zealand String Quartet on Tuesday 25 August, commemorating the 200th anniversary of the death of Haydn. That concert contained, not only 21 excerpts from the quartets, from Op 1 to Op 103, but also recitations by the four quartet members from letters and memoirs recorded by a number of... read more

‘Hideous Love’ offered by Brio, opera ensemble

By , 26/08/2009
The success of the somewhat heterogeneous range of voices comprising the vocal ensemble Brio lies in their energy and histrionic flair and the plain delight they four take in what they undertake. On this occasion Roger Wilson replaced the ensemble's usual baritone Justin Pearce. Acis and Galatea was given a semi-staged performance by New Zealand Opera a few years ago in... read more

NZSO/Todd Corporation: promoting our young composers

By , 25/08/2009
The Todd Corporation's - and New Zealand Symphony Orchestra's - support for the Young Composer Awards makes it one of the most important arts sponsorships in the country. Their promotion of the growing point - the apical meristem - of creative artistic development promises to deliver a much greater return in cultural benefits than the (more typical) funding that goes into many, more prominent, areas. As conductor and co-adjudicator... read more

Haydn with Strings attached

By , 25/08/2009
“Music begins where words leave off” as the old saying goes, suggesting that the two media are sometimes best left to their own devices, and that their combination needs to be handled with surety and skill. However, by using both spoken words and music (more easefully as the evening progressed) the New Zealand String Quartet managed in their presentation “Josef Haydn and the String Quartet” to bring the composer... read more

Wellington Regional Aria Contest: Dame Malvina Major Prize

By , 23/08/2009

St Andrew’s on The Terrace. Sunday 23 August 2009

In recent years what used to be the Aria Contest of the Hutt Valley Performing Arts Competitions Society has struggled to survive. For many years it was The Evening Post Aria, but after The Dominion and The Evening Post merged in 2002, the paper dispensed with that responsibility. It has now been... read more

Bach organ recital from Mews at St Mary of the Angels

By , 23/08/2009

This was the second in the series of three recitals on the Maxwell Fernie organ at St Mary of the Angels. The first was by the, shall we say, organiste titulaire of St Mary’s, Donald Nicolson. This one was by the City organist and keyboard specialist at the New Zealand School of Music, Douglas Mews. After the concert he talked in... read more

Last Night of the Proms with Wellington Orchestra

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By , 22/08/2009

Wellington’s experience suggests that there’s no such thing as the Last Night of the Proms. The big audiences – this one was sold out – justifies the Wellington Orchestra’s decision to stick with a good thing, or at least a rewarding thing, so the adjective ‘last’ has to be understood as a relative term. One wonders how Wellington would turn out if another of the... read more

Extreme Lands

By , 21/08/2009
"Extreme Lands" was an event incorporating sound (live and recorded), words, and images, imaginatively curated by Wellington composer Alexandra Hay. There were four items on the programme, beginning with "Cigarettes for Ping Pong" by experimental singer-songwriter Carol Micallef, which she sang in her attractive voice, accompanying herself on a tiny retro synth, with the aid of erstwhile guitarist Dylan Lardelli on viola. Alexandra Hay's own work, "Moon Song", utilized a text... read more

Alastair Carey with the Clerkes of Christ Church, Oxford

By , 19/08/2009

Cathedral of the Sacred Heart, Wednesday 19 August 2009

The former tenor and director of The Tudor Consort, Alastair Carey, who left Wellington to pursue a career in England found his way into the choir of Christ Church (it does not employ the word ‘college’, though it is one), Oxford. The choir is one of the several distinguished university choirs which include... read more

Soprano Nicola Holt and pianist Nicole Chao at St Andrew’s

By , 19/08/2009

St Andrew’s on The Terrace. Midday, Wednesday 19 August 2009

I missed the first two songs in this lunchtime concert, but was told that the two songs by Thomas Arne, from Shakespeare (‘Where the bee sucks’ from The Tempest, and ‘When daisies pied’ from Love’s Labours Lost) were most delightfully sung. But I was very happy to arrive just after the Schumann song cycle had started... read more

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