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MUSIC REVIVAL AT HILTON (article first published : 2005-08-28)

One of the evergreen traditions at The Witness Hilton Arts Festival is the Music Revival concert series deftly put together by maestro Christopher Duigan to be held throughout the festival at Hilton College from September 16 to 18. This year, the series features 12 concerts.

Concerts 1 and 7, Gypsy Tango in Vienna is a grand feast of sultry tangos, beguiling gypsy melodies and light classical gems reflecting the cosmopolitan atmosphere of old world Vienna. The concert features the Kerimov Trio - Elena Kerimova (violin), Boris Kerimov (cello) and Christopher Duigan (piano) who are joined by popular baritone Federico Freschi. Concert 2 features String Quartets by W A Mozart and Schubert's beautifully shaped Rosamund Quartet in A minor played by the Wouter string quartet.

Concert 3 sees a change of pace with the African Music and Dance Project. Then moving to jazz with Concert 4 which features a lunch hour programme of jazz standards. Concert 5 features the Duke of Cornwall Singers from St Stithians in Johannesburg. This is a chamber choir of 18 boys who perform nationally and undertake regular international tours under the guidance of conductor Dalene Hoogenhout.

Concert 6 is Opera is Calling Me and features some of the most popular opera arias and ensembles pieces as performed by three young artists. Suitable for Sunday is the theme for the Concert 8 featuring the Duke of Cornwall Singers in a selection of sacred music, the Kerimov Trio playing Baroque selection plus classical melodies and improvisations for saxophone and organ played by Jeff Judge and David Orr.

Concert 9 features six cellos from the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra. Their programme includes original works by Cape Town composer Alan Stephenson, popular classics, music inspired by Seville, and their own version of Metallica's The Unforgiven.

The theme of Concert 10 is most intriguing: Music For Flute, Cello & Piano : Voice Of The Whale. American composer George Crumbs legendary Voice Of The Whale is the centrepiece of this production. This highly effective music for amplified cello, flute and piano includes direction for costume and lighting. Concert 11 is a Beethoven Afternoon when Elena Kerimova (violin) and Boris Kerimov (cello) play two of Beethoven most brilliant string sonatas with pianist Christopher Duigan for the Sunday afternoon feature at the festival.

Finally, Concert 12 is a programme of Indian classical pieces featuring legendary sitar player Sanjeet Teeluck. The sitar was brought to popular culture through Ravi Shankar. Teeluck is joined by a tabla player and the programme also features a section of classical Indian Hindi dance. This is a varied introduction to the art of Indian Classical Music.

The festival is honoured to host the KZNPO in Concert for one concert only on Saturday afternoon. Their programme is a showcase of symphonic classics that features pianist Christopher Duigan in an all Tchaikovsky programme.

As always complementing the performing arts, there are a myriad of art exhibitions on display throughout the Hilton campus featuring some of KZNs top visual artists, and the annual Brainfest lecture series.

Booking kits are available from selected SPAR Stores in KZN. Kits can also be collected from Exclusive Books (La Lucia, Pavilion and Gateway), Adams in Musgrave Centre and town, Shooters and Shuters and the Witness offices in Pietermaritzburg. Detailed information can be found on www.artslink.co.za/hilton

Festival goers are strongly advised to book accommodation early at one of the many B&Bs and hotels in the area. For more information visit http://www/artslink.co.za/hilton or http://www.witness.co.za or the Hilton Festival hotline on theatre@hiltoncollege.com or phone 033 3830126.




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