NZSO plays benefit concert for Anna van der Zee and her family

Players of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra conducted by Hamish McKeich with Samuel Jacobs – French horn

Overture: The Magic Flute (Mozart); Horn Concerto No 4 in E flat (Mozart); Symphony No 5 in C minor (Beethoven)

Church of Saint Mary of the Angels

Saturday 14 July, 7.30pm

This benefit concert was presented to give a little help to Anna van der Zee, a first violinist in the NZSO, and her family (Christiaan, a violist, and their daughter) who had lost everything, including musical instruments, in a house fire two weeks before. It was hosted by the church, as explained by the parish priest, Father Barry Scannell, because of Anna’s contribution to the performance of live music there.

Anna has been much heard in chamber music concerts and as soloist with the Wellington Chamber Orchestra over recent years; both she and Christiaan played in the Tasman String Quartet.

The concert itself was introduced by principal cellist Andrew Joyce who described the immediate response by Anna’s colleagues to the tragedy, suggesting a benefit concert. The news had clearly moved large numbers of people and by 7.20 there were no seats left in the church and people were directed to the choir gallery above the west door; and scores stood along the side aisles.

Around sixty NZSO players were able to participate, including the recently appointed principal horn player, Samuel Jacobs, who took the spectacular solo part in Mozart’s Fourth Horn Concerto in E flat.

Nothing less than the greatest music would do to mark the occasion.
The concert began with the Overture to The Magic Flute, and ended with a triumphant performance of Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony.