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KZNPO TOUR STATISTICS (article first published : 2004-11-10)

The 202-strong KZN Philharmonic touring company is set to take off for London and Bremen at the weekend. In an historic first for South Africa, the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra (KZNPO) will stage a joint performance with Britain’s famed London Symphony Orchestra (LSO) at the Barbican on November 16 before travelling to Bremen, Durban’s twin city in Germany, where it will give a concert in the St Ansgari Cathedral on November 20 (see separate article on these pages).

In the touring company are 62 members of the orchestra plus soloists Linda Bukhosini and Bongani Tembe (the KZNPO’s artistic director), 129 choir members and seven admin people.

Accompanying them will be video producer (and artSMart editor) Caroline Smart and arts cameraman Chris Coombes who will be filming the tour. This long-term professional partnership has seen the duo filming numerous arts programmes for Collage, Arts Unlimited and Good Morning, South Africa. They have produced two corporate videos for the KZNPO.

Getting the company from Durban to Cape Town, London, Hamburg and Bremen and back again has involved about 160 passports and visas, 404 air tickets and five coaches. By the time the company returns home, the members will have travelled about 23,000 kilometres! There are 67 instruments – not counting the percussion - winging their way across the world at a value of about R4 million. The ones that have been freighted already weigh 420 kg.

The paperwork in its literal sense is staggering – the scores for the musicians and the choristers add up to at least 5,000 pages and each passport or visa is accompanied by about five other documents.

The KZNPO performs the final concert in their World Symphony Series this evening (November 11) at 19h30 in the Durban City Hall. The conductor is Francois Xavier Roth and the programme features Mendelssohn’s Symphony No. 2 and Ravel’s Bolero as well as Phelelani Mnomiya’s Zizi Lethu! Themba Lethu! which will be performed in London.

Soloists will be Linda Bukhosini (soprano) and Bongani Tembe (tenor) with the Durban Serenade Choral Society. Zizi Lethu! Themba Lethu! is a new commissioned work composed by Mnomiya based on a poem by eminent author Dr Lindiwe Mabuza.

This concert sets the scene for a triumphant conclusion to the season and forms part of the Orchestra’s contribution to South Africa’s 10th Anniversary festivities. It also offers Durban music-lovers a chance to see what will undoubtedly thrill and excite audiences in London and Bremen.

Book at Computicket. For more information on the KZNPO, click on the banner advert at the top of the page which will take you through to the orchestra’s website.




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