Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

Wellington Chamber Orchestra with rewarding and interesting music from Britain and Armenia

It was tempting to describe this as a concert of unfamiliar twentieth-century music, however the symphony was composed and first performed in the 1880s. An enthusiastic audience filled the church to hear this interesting programme, that began with the rather elusive, indefinite opening of the Finzi work.  This had once been intended to be part of a symphony, but it never eventuated, and after many years, the work was completed... read more

Baroque music, rare and familiar, in a happy St Andrew’s concert

A larger-than-average audience came to hear this programme of a mixture  of familiar and unfamiliar baroque works. Sometimes musical (and other) works from the past are lost sight of because their worth is slight.  This seemed to me to be true of the Cervetto piece.  Extraordinary as it is to read of a a composer from 17th-18th centuries who lived to be at least 101 (c.1682-1783), his music didn’t live... read more

NZSO in splendid Beethoven: the first and the last, under Edo de Waart

Such is the popularity of Beethoven’s Choral Symphony (no.9) that the Michael Fowler Centre auditorium was sold out.  There were two empty seats next to me, but I did not see many others. The gentle prologue to  Beethoven’s first symphony (the symphony premiered in 1800) almost sounds like an ending, and reminds one immediately of Haydn, the great master of the symphony, who was still around for the first 40... read more

First-class performance of a Brahms masterpiece by Vivanti String Sextet

A sizeable audience heard this masterwork from Brahms, played by a sextet made up of members of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra (plus friend Martin Jaenecke).  The work is seldom heard, probably because of the difficulty of assembling a sextet.  I don’t think I have heard it live since a concert given by a visiting ensemble in a Festival concert many years go – was it 1988?  1990?  They... read more

Edo de Waart reaffirms his comprehensive Mahlerian authority and insight with Number Seven

The concert was one of Edo de Waart’s ‘Masterworks’ series.  A mammoth symphony of over 80 minutes in length was obviously not everyone’s cup of tea: the front block of seating downstairs was virtually empty.  But it was a tour de force for conductor and orchestra.  The huge variety of musical and instrumental content and the diversity of sounds, timbres and musical ideas bore out Mahler’s well-known saying that... read more

Choral concert to celebrate new digital organ at Cathedral of Saint Paul

With the organ moved to the side, the rather small audience had full view of the choirs in their red cassocks.  In his introduction, Michael Stewart referred to ‘choral blockbusters’; we had a few of them!  First was Handel’s famous coronation anthem ‘Zadok the Priest’.  It was sung with the usual robust cheerfulness, as was the next anthem, Parry’s ‘I was glad’.  Richard Apperley accompanied this in fine style... read more

Heroic welcome for the new digital organ in St Paul’s Cathedral

To celebrate the inauguration of its new Viscount Regent Classic digital organ, the Wellington Cathedral of St. Paul has put on an Organ Festival.  The guest organist, Dr Joseph Nolan, is a British organist, formerly organist at the Chapels Royal in London (involving numbers of different organs, including one at Buckingham Palace), but since 2008, Organist and Master of Music at St. George’s Cathedral in Perth, Western Australia. Probably due... read more

Diverting, varied, guitar recital by NZSM students

It was not easy to understand what were the alterations to this concert’s programme, caused in part by illness; the microphone not working (as indeed it did not the previous week) didn’t help matters. First up in this varied programme were Rameka Tamaki and Oliver Featherston.  They played as a guitar duo Theme & Variations from Sextet Opus 18 (second movement) by Johannes Brahms (1833 - 1897), arranged by the... read more

NZSM cellists under Inbal Megiddo play cello favourites, some rare, some in disguise, all skilled and entertaining

lnbal Megiddo is the head of Cello Studies at the New Zealand School of Music.  Along with her today were seven cello students, all highly competent on the instrument.  Their varied programme was heard by a sizeable audience. The programme commenced with a very fine arrangement of Mozart’s Overture to his opera The Magic Flute, by Douglas Moore, an American composer who died in 1969. The tone of the four... read more

Violin and piano competition winners show robust musical and technical gifts and fine rapport

A concert of illustrious music from an illustrious duo.  Ioana Cristina Goicea is the winner of the 2017 Michael Hill a Violin Competition, and Andrey Gugnin the winner of the 2016 Sydney International Piano Competition.  Their tour of New Zealand with Chamber Music New Zealand is in association with the Michael Hill Competition.  A good-sized audience heard this noteworthy recital, the last in the Waikanae Music Society’s 2018 series It... read more

Panorama Theme by Themocracy