Supported by generous help from the Turnovsky Endowment Trust

Emotion-laden concert an appropriate response to the remembrance of the Holocaust

By , 30/07/2019
Laurence Sherr is Composer-in-Residence and Professor of Music at Kennesaw State University, Georgia. He is a prolific and versatile composer. The son of a couple who escaped Poland just before the outbreak of the Second World War and settled in the United States, he has a strong interest in the Holocaust and Holocaust education. He lectures all over the world on Holocaust remembrance music and first came to Wellington... read more

The best drawn from Wellington Youth Orchestra in taxing programme under Donald Armstrong

By , 28/07/2019
The Wellington Youth Orchestra is the only full-size symphony orchestra for young players in Wellington. The ages of the members range from 25 to 13. They all have to go through a rigorous audition to join. The orchestra has an important place in the Wellington musical scene, not only for the varied and interesting programmes it offers, but because it is a stepping stone for young people who aspire... read more

Cheerful winds of fruitfulness blowing through St. Andrews

By , 24/07/2019
This was a concert of cheerful short pieces. Bach's Fugue is referred to a 'Little' to distinguish it from its longer and very grand 'Great Fantasia and Fugue in G minor'. Bach wrote it for the organ and it was arranged for various different groups, including a wind quintet. It requires very precise, accurate playing by each of the players. The five individual voices have to be clearly articulated and... read more

Medlyn and Greager give rewarding and intelligent recital of early 20th century songs, plus four by Vincent O’Sullivan/Ross Harris

By , 10/07/2019
A song recital by two internationally renowned singers based in Wellington is a significant musical event. The programme was like a snapshot of the music of the first half of the twentieth century across a wide range of countries, Austria, France, Germany, Italy, Russia, with a more recent item from New Zealand. The concert began with Margaret Medlyn singing Alban Berg's Seven Early Songs (1907). These songs were written under... read more

Wellington Chamber Music’s fine, imaginative violin and piano recital from Beer and Watkins

By , 07/07/2019
Andrew Beer, Concert Master of the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra and Sarah Watkins, highly regarded chamber musician played an interesting recital in the Wellington Chamber music Sunday Concerts series. Two new New Zealand works were sandwiched in between a rarely heard sonata by Ravel and one of the most popular pieces of the violin repertoire, César Franck's violin sonata. Leonie Holmes is a prolific and versatile composer, teaching composition at the... read more

A joyful, exhilarating Barber of Seville, New Zealand Opera’s first offering of the year

By , 29/06/2019
Colourful, joyful, exhilarating are the words to describe this production of the Barber of Seville. From the very beginning of the Overture, taken at a moderate steady tempo that let every phrase be clearly articulated, we know that we are in for a treat. When the action starts with the chorus, the serenaders, horsing around it is clear that this will be an entertaining show. Almaviva, John Tessier enters... read more

NZSO marks Blake’s retirement with his haunting ‘Angel at Ahipara’, plus splendid Stravinsky and Tchaikovsky

By , 20/06/2019
Tchaikovsky, Stravinsky, and a piece by a significant contemporary composer, Christopher Blake, might seem like popular programming, but as was evident by the large number of empty seats, the programme lacked wide appeal. Tchaikovsky's First Symphony is seldom performed, Stravinsky's Violin Concerto is very different from other more popular twentieth century violin concertos and Christopher Blake's music is unknown territory. Yet it is important both for the orchestra and... read more

Inspirare as singular performers of Brahms choral pieces and part songs

By , 15/06/2019
This was a concert of music by one composer only, Brahms, and does not stray from traditional classical repertoire. Yet, apart from the piano solo, Rhapsody in G minor, Op 79, No 2, and the first movement of the Violin Sonata No 3 in D minor, Op. 108, the vocal works in the programme are seldom heard. The concert opened with Vier Quartette, Op.92, sung by Alex Gandionco, soprano, Eleanor... 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

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

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