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ORCHESTRAL AUDITIONS (article first published : 2000-11-18)

Talented musicians throughout South Africa have the exciting opportunity of participating in the creation of a brand-new and dynamic orchestra, to be based in the Cape. For the first time in its five year history, the Spier Festival Trust will be creating its own 45-piece, in-house orchestra to accompany productions and perform in symphony concerts at the SAA Summer Festival at Spier.

In keeping with Spier's commitment and priority to source and nurture South African talent as far as possible, a nationwide schedule has been drawn up to find musicians of the highest calibre as founding members for the orchestra.

Auditions will be held from 10h00 in Johannesburg at the Civic Theatre (November 20); in Bloemfontein at University of the Free State Music Department (November 21), and in Port Elizabeth at the University of PE South End Campus (November 22). Auditions in Cape Town have already taken place and no auditions have been planned for Durban.

Musicians will need to be available from mid-December 2000 to mid-March 2001 to accompany the productions of Bizet's opera Carmen; the classic Leonard Bernstein musical West Side Story and the South African premiere of Kurt Weill's theatrical opera The Silver Lake.

Charles Hazlewood, Music Director of the Spier Festival Trust said, " Ideally, candidates should have some orchestral experience but most importantly they should possess the right attitude to being part of creating a brilliant new orchestra and to music making in the broadest sense. We are ultimately looking for candidates who will maintain the Spier standard of excellence but who are willing to work with fresh and dynamic ideas as far as the music making process is concerned. Total commitment and passion will be expected to create the best final product possible."

Musicians will be required to bring a recent photograph and CV to auditions, as well as prepare two contrasting pieces, one 19th and one 20th century, the latter may feature a jazz or swing based piece. Candidates requiring piano accompaniment must provide their own accompanist.

To book an audition time, applicants should contact Irene on (021) 881-3190, giving their contact details and titles of the pieces they will be performing.




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