Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

Amalia Hall splendidly embodies Virtuoso Violin with Orchestra Wellington

By , 12/06/2021
Marc Taddei introduced the concert with a few words of explanation. This programme reflected a significant change in music history, the dawn of a new era, the shift from concerts performed in salons in aristocratic palaces to concerts performed by widely celebrated virtuosos in concert halls to large audiences. It also reflected the changes in instruments, violins with longer necks and strings and pianos with stronger frames that could... read more

Monique Lapins and Jian Liu give consummate performances of Bartok and Debussy at St.Andrew’s

By , 26/05/2021
How privileged we are in Wellington to be able to go to a lunch time concert on a beautiful Wednesday and hear such consummate artists as Monique Lapins and Jian Liu of the NZ School of Music. They presented a challenging programme of Debussy and Bartók. The two violin sonatas were written within a few years of each other, Debussy's in 1917 in the middle of the war, Bartók's... read more

Wellington Chamber Orchestra’s Mendelssohn and Shostakovich make for stimulating contrast

By , 17/04/2021
It says a lot about Wellington’s musical life that groups such as the Wellington Chamber Orchestra – an orchestra made up of about 70 players, all proficient amateur musicians, young, and not-so-young – can thrive and enrich the city’s music, with four interesting and varied concerts during this 2021 season. This concert began with the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto, one of the most popular works in the repertoire, and understandably so... read more

End of the musical year for Wellington Chamber Orchestra with an Emperor and Franck’s symphony

By , 13/12/2020
Verdi: La Forza del Destino overture The overture to Verdi's opera, 'The Power of Fate' is much more popular than the opera itself. It encapsulates the drama of the opera, its lyricism and its wonderful melodies. It opens with three unison chords for the brasses, followed by repeated agitated phrases by the lower strings, which foreshadows the tragedy of the drama to follow. A beautiful mournful theme from Act 3... read more

Orchestra Wellington: huge percussion resources exploited in Psathas masterpiece from Olympus complemented by huge Rachmaninov symphony

By , 05/12/2020
The large line-up of percussion instruments at the front of the orchestra would have given an inkling to the audience that they would be in for a challenging, interesting evening of music. Although the John Psathas' View from Olympus has had many performances, premiered by the Halle Orchestra in Manchester in 2002, it is still music off the beaten track for an audience of predominantly older concert goers. The... read more

Unfamiliar music given a chance to shine in characterful performances at St. Andrew’s

By , 18/11/2020
One of the great joys of the lunch time concerts at St. Andrews on the Terrace is that these provide opportunities to hear some of the talented artists living among us, the other is to hear music that otherwise is seldom performed. Rebecca Steel is one of the most experienced flautists around, having played with orchestras both overseas and here in Wellington and Christchurch. Kris Zuelicke moved from Germany... read more

“Timeless” classics with a twist – latest in the NZSO’s “Podium” Series

By , 24/10/2020
This was the last concert of a tour of five centres. It was a programme of safe music by Mozart, Haydn and Beethoven, nothing to intimidate a conservative audience, though Beethoven laid down major challenges that audiences have grappled with since the work was first performed by the Schuppanzigh Quartet in 1825. The orchestra was reduced to strings two horns, oboes, clarinets bassoons and a flute. There were no... read more

An exhilarating piano duet concert from Duo Harmonics at St Andrew’s

By , 30/09/2020
Duo Enharmonics, the Nicole Chao and Beth Chen piano duo team, have become regular performers at the St Andrew's lunch time concerts. This year they offered a journey from a graceful Mozart Sonata of 1765 through Rachmaninov's nostalgic Russian group of six pieces of 1894, to the grand spectacular duo piano arrangement of Ravel's La Valse of 1920. The Mozart Sonata in D Major, KV.381 is a very early work... read more

Simon O’Neill generates plenty of “Spirit” in NZSO Podium Series Concert

By , 06/08/2020
Hurrah for the NZSO, one of the very few orchestras anywhere in the world able to give live concerts. The large audience showed its appreciation. For reasons not clear to this writer, the concert was labelled “Spirit” though there was nothing particularly spiritual about the programme. There was no narrative theme to the programme, but this didn't matter. Many in the audience came especially to hear the renowned New Zealand heldentenor, Simon O'Neill, star of the... read more

Goldberg Variations from NZSO musicians with Stephen De Pledge – “a journey of life with its full gamut of emotions”

By , 22/07/2020
Bach's Goldberg Variations is one of the greatest, if not the greatest set of variations in the keyboard repertoire. Count Kaiserling, Elector of Saxony, commissioned Bach to write it for his protege, the young keyboard player, Johann Gottlieb Goldberg. The work consists of thirty variations on a theme, an Aria, that Bach might have heard or found in his wife's, Anna Magdalena's, notebook. Playing... read more

Panorama Theme by Themocracy