About Me

I ramble about a number of things - but travel experiences, movies and music feature prominently. See my label cloud for a better idea. All comnments and opinions on this blog are my own, and do not in any way reflect the opinions/position of my employer (past/current/future).

07 November 2016

JPO and KZNPO's 2nd Annual Joint Concert

The JPO has been quite inactive since last year's joint concert; and the 2nd Annual Joint Concert with the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra, was sort of a relaunch of the JPO. The recently retired Deputy Chief Justice, Justice Dikgang Moseneke was announced as the new chair of the board; and the occasion had a lot more buzz - with attendees including Herman Mashaba, the new Mayor of Johannesburg (who managed to tie inner city redevelopment to the need for culture and thus the JPO), former First Lady Zanele Mbeki and a few ambassadors. It was a packed audience also; and witnessed what I think was one of the finest solo piano concertos and one of the best concerts overall - certainly of those I have attended.

The concert started with the lively Overture to Euryanthe by Carl Maria von Weber; which I don't think has been performed by the JPO before. The musical score was mesmerising and was the perfect curtain raiser to the solo performance.

There have been a number of performances of Rachmaninoff's 2nd Piano Concerto; and this was in my mind, the finest, thoroughly deserving the standing ovation from the near full house. Pianist Valentina Lisitsa, described in the program as the first classical music YouTube star, was a late replacement; and she delivered an absolutely stunning performance. I am not sure what makes this performance stand out over previous ones - but something just made it special.

The concert finished off with Tchaikovsky's 5th Symphony. In a time of economic and political turmoil in South Africa; and given the JPO's own recent turbulent past, a symphony that celebrates the idea of "ultimate victory through strife" was rather appropriate.

No comments: