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KZN PHILHARMONIC NEWS (article first published : 2006-01-8)

The KZN Philharmonic Orchestra had a good 2005 with many exciting concerts behind them, successful patronage to celebrate, and an even better 2006 ahead.

The World Symphony Series 2006 Summer Season promises to be an exciting one, not the least because the KZNPO will unveil its new Steinway Grand Piano at the first concert on February 9 and what more appropriate way to christen this stunning instrument, than with a performance of Rachmaninov's challenging Third Piano Concerto performed by critically lauded pianist Florian Uhlig? The conductor will be Robert Maxym and soloists Simone Lamsma (violin) and Florian Uhlig (piano). The evening opens with Mussorgsky's celebratory Night on the Bare Mountain followed by Dutch violinist Simone Lamsma who performs Bruch's charming Scottish Fantasy.

Symphonic Masterpiece on February 16 will be conducted by Alexander Kalajdzic. Acclaimed for transforming "...a solid wall of piano sound into a texture of crystalline clarity", German pianist Jan Gottlieb Jiracek brings to the stage the grace and charm of Liszt's Piano Concerto No. 1. Brahms's final symphonic masterpiece, Symphony No. 4, which features one of the most poignant flute solos ever written, concludes the concert which opens with Mendelssohnís The Hebrides: Overture.

Russian Rivals on February 23 will be conducted by British conductor James Lowe who appears for the first time on the Durban stage leading a programme that celebrates the brilliance of Russian composers with works such as Borodinís Polovtsian Dances and Rimsky-Korsakovís Scheherazade. Recognised as one of the foremost international horn players, Froydis Ree Wekre makes her debut with the KZNPO performing GliŤre's exceptionally difficult Horn Concerto.

Conducted by Omri Hadari, the concert on March 2 is titled Rich & Intoxicating in which the KZN Philharmonic takes centre stage in a programme which highlights the talents of Africa's premier orchestra. One of Tchaikovsky's most popular works, Serenade for Strings opens the concert with its beautiful melodies and rich luxurious sounds. Beethoven's Symphony No. 7, his self-proclaimed "most excellent symphony", which Richard Wagner called "the apotheosis of the dance", is featured in the second half.

Omri Hadari returns to the podium for Joie de vivre on March 9. The concert also marks the returns to Durban of BBC "Young Musician of the Year" 2004, Nicola Benedetti, to perform Tchaikovsky's spirited Violin Concerto. In celebration of the 100th anniversary of Shostakovich's birth, the programme concludes with his triumphant Symphony No. 5.

Across Eras on March 16, again conducted by Omri Hadari opens with Rossiniís La scala di seta (The silken ladder) Overture and features soloist Alison Stephens in Vivaldiís Mandolin concerto. Rodrigo's breathtaking Concierto de Aranjuezwork marks the debut of commended Australian guitarist, Craig Ogden. The programme then travels from the colourful Mediterranean to the dark mysteries of the new world with DvorŠk's powerful Symphony No. 9 "From the New World".

The concert on March 23 is titled Celebrating Mozart". 250 years after his birth, Mozart's brilliance lives on. The KZNPO celebrates his work with a programme which opens with La clemenza di Tito; Overture and one of his most inspiring symphonies, Symphony No. 39. Sally Silver, former South African soprano now making a name for herself on the European classical music scene, makes a welcome return to Durban to perform a selection of arias under the baton of her husband, notable conductor Jeremy Silver.

Music from the classical period sets the tone for a vibrant conclusion to the season in the concert titled Classical Finale on March 30 which opens with Weberís Euryanthe: Overture. Renowned piano duo, Aglika Genova and Liuben Dimitrov perform Mendelssohn's demanding Concerto for Two Pianos. The composer's evocative Symphony No. 4 "Italian" brings the evening to a lively close.

Once again, subscribers will benefit from up to 25% discount on ticket prices for multiple concert bookings. For more information on tickets prices please visit the KZNPOís website by clicking on the banner advert at the top of this page.

Contact the orchestraís office direct on 031 369 9404 or 369 9477 or 369 9438 during office hours, or email bookings@kznpo.co.za




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