Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

Illuminating the Bard – sonnets for a 450th birthday

This performance was a celebration of Shakespeare’s sonnets on the 450th anniversary of his birth. By happy chance the two actors were in New Zealand during the 50th anniversary celebrations of Wellington’s Cathedral of St. Paul, and as part of those, they had devised a programme to “perform from Shakespeare’s sonnets and other works with sidelights on his mysterious life, some original pronunciation and a few surprises”. There were... read more

NZ Opera’s “Don Giovanni” in Wellington enthralling

  Much has been written about what is probably the world’s most continuously successful opera: Mozart’s Don Giovanni. That it continues to draw in the crowds despite the misgivings of various ‘experts’ over the years is tribute not only to the variety and virtuosity of the music, but also to the characterisation in Lorenzo da Ponte’s sometimes denigrated libretto. This opera is notable for many things; the complexity of the vocal writing... read more

Orchestral spectaculars from the NZSO – and a 2015 sneak-preview

By , 10/10/2014
I thought it happy and appropriate that the second half of the NZSO "Bold Worlds" Wellington concert on Friday of last week was prefaced by several of the principal players telling us something about the 2015 orchestral season (details of which had just been released), and specifically what each of them was particularly looking forward to taking part in. So we were able to hear concertmaster Vesa-Matti Leppänen telling us... read more

Soloists add distinction to NZSM Orchestra concert

By , 02/10/2014
In the wake of a couple of crackingly good recent concerts given by the NZSM Orchestra and its intrepid conductor, Kenneth Young, I found myself eagerly looking forward to this particular evening's presentation. The programme followed the orchestra's policy of mixing the familiar (Brahms, Tchaikovsky) with the less-frequently performed (Barber, Bartok), the repertoire obviously designed to present the student musicians with a wide range of technical and stylistic challenges For... read more

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