The Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO) is pleased to announce details of its 2018 Spring Season. The Spring Season is set to take place at the Linder Auditorium in Parktown, at Wits University from 24 October to 17 November 2018.
The season continues to uphold the proud tradition of the renowned World Symphony Series (WSS) launched in Durban 22 years ago and introduced to JPO audiences late last year. Continuing to attract an array of artistic audiences, the season is set to continue delivering a world class symphony concerts experience.
With one of four programmes, starting at 20:00, audiences can expect performances to take place on every Wednesday and Thursday throughout the season. The Wednesday performances will be repeated the following evening, and a third performance of the last programme will be repeated on 17 Saturday November.
“As late Spring heralds the approach of Summer, we are proud to bring our greatly valued family of music lovers together again, for a rich mix of live music making. This is geared to appeal to audiences of all ages,” says JPO Artistic Director and Chief Executive, Mr Bongani Tembe. “We are delighted to welcome all our music lovers and our new family members back to the Linder Auditorium for our carefully curated programmes, the first of which will see the JPO teaming up with the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra.”
American maestro, William Eddins, Music Director Emeritus of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, and a frequent guest conductor of major orchestras throughout the world, launches the season with an eclectic programme representative of four countries.
Camille Saint-Saëns’s tumultuous Bacchanale from his biblical operatic epic, Samson et Delilah, provides a high-energy Francophile concert lift off. Violinist, Rachel Lee Priday, one of today’s new-generation classical stars whom is acclaimed for her beauty of tone and riveting stage presence, will transport the audience into the heart of the evening’s programme with an excursion into the upper reaches of late 19th century German Romanticism, found in Brahms’s magnificent Violin Concerto in D Major.
During the second half of the evening, audiences will experience the JPO paying homage to one of South Africa’s greatly loved matriarchs, Mama Albertina Sisulu, with a performance of Bongani Ndodana-Breen’s Ma Sisulu Sinfonia. The centenary of Mama Albertina Sisulu’s birth takes place this year. The evening is set to close with another centennial salute, to Leonard Bernstein (1918 – 1990), as the Johannesburg and KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic players sign off on a spectacular note, performing the great American composer’s Symphonic Dances from his smash hit Broadway musical, Westside Story.
German conductor Justus Frantz takes the JPO podium for the second programme of the season, on 31st October and 1st November. Maestro Frantz opens with one of Liszt’s most dazzling orchestral compositions, his Symphonic Poem No 4 ‘Les Preludes’.Following this high-octane piece is a difficult act to cap, but the challenge is one which highly accomplished young South African cello soloist, Aristide du Plessis, Associate Principal Cello of the KZN Philharmonic, will apply his considerable skills to the bravura challenges of Camille Saint-Saëns’s Cello Concerto No I in A minor. The evening climaxes with a performance of one of the concert circuit’s best-loved staples, Antonin Dvorak’s Symphony No.9 in e minor, Op.95 “From the New World”.
Japanese master conductor, Yasuo Shinozaki, is at the helm of the JPO for its third programme of the season on 7th and 8th November. Following a performance of Mendelssohn’s enchanting but rarely heard Fair Melusina Overture, the South African-born virtuoso, Robert Pickup, Principal Clarinettist of the Philharmonia Zurich Orchestra, takes the spotlight in one of the repertoire’s most thrilling showpieces – Carl Maria von Weber’s Clarinet Concerto No 1 in F minor. Beethoven’s towering Eroica Symphonybrings the evening to a rousing close.
The Israeli-American conductor, Daniel Boico, makes a dynamic return to the JPO’s podium to round off the season on 14, 15 and 17 November. Following another Liszt concert dazzler as a curtain raiser, the Hungarian Rhapsody No.2 in C minor, the acclaimed German-Russian pianist, Olga Scheps, an exclusive Sony Classical recording artist, is set to take the Linder by storm with her account of one of the international concert-going public’s best loved war-horses, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No 2 in C minor. Bringing the house down on a sublime note, Elgar’s iconic Enigma Variations is a work always guaranteed to send concert-goers home on an exultant note.
Season tickets for the Johannesburg Philharmonic’s World Symphony Series 2018 Spring Season are available through Computicket. Call 0861 915 8000 or book online at www.computicket.com. For more information visit www.joburg.co.za/johannesburg-philharmonic-orchestra.