Paul Hindemith’s Symphonic Metamorphosis of Themes by Carl Maria von Weber grew out of a request from choreographer and dancer Léonide Massine in 1940 for music for a ballet. While the project was shelved, the completed piece has since been adapted for ballet productions and is equally powerful as a standalone work.
Prokofiev’s rich and multi-layered Violin Concerto No. 2 was his last work written in Europe before his return to the Soviet Union. It makes full use of the instrument, with intoxicating contrasts in tone, colour, melody, and rhythm and is the perfect fit for the virtuosic skills of NZSO Concertmaster Vesa-Matti Leppänen.
Inspired by his homeland, Tchaikovsky’s bold Fifth Symphony came 10 years after his Fourth and divided audiences at its premiere. It is bursting with unforgettable melodies and lush orchestration, making it one of the great works of the Romantic tradition. Under the baton of Maestro de Waart, the NZSO will perform it in all its glory.
Top New Zealand composers and arrangers Gareth Farr, Claire Cowan, Chris Gendall and Hamish Oliver have been working with The Phoenix Foundation and NZSO Associate Conductor Hamish McKeich to create orchestral versions of the band’s much-loved works.
The Phoenix Foundation – Samuel Scott, Lukasz Buda, Conrad Wedde, Will Ricketts, Tom Callwood and Chris O’Connor – won the New Zealand Music Award for best group in 2010 for the album Buffalo. The band also contributed to several movie soundtracks, including film-maker Taika Waititi’s box office hits Boy and Hunt for the Wilderpeople.
We have two double passes to give away to the Christchurch concert on Thursday 30 August at the Isaac Theatre Royal.
Fill out the entry form on our website to be in with a chance to win. Entries close 5pm Wednesday 22 August. Winners will be announced on our website on Thursday 23 August.
The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra’s 2018 season continues next month with internationally renowned tenor Simon O’Neill returning home to perform a special series of concerts a concert featuring works by Richard Wagner and Anton Bruckner. The Christchurch concert will take place on Wednesday 13 June at the Isaac Theatre Royal.
An Evening with Simon O’Neill will be the singer’s debut orchestral performance of Richard Wagner’s famous song cycle the Wesendonck Lieder.
Wagner wrote the five songs to poems by his muse and lover Mathilde Wesendonck, while he was also working on his great romantic opera Tristan und Isolde.
Hailed by critics as “the Wagnerian tenor of his generation”, O’Neill has recorded Wesendonck Lieder with New Zealand pianist Terence Dennis, but has never sung the song cycle with an orchestra.
This performance will also see the NZSO perform Wagner contemporary Anton Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4. Known as the ‘Romantic Symphony’, it is one of Bruckner’s most popular works and his first symphony to achieve significant public acclaim.
The NZSO will be led by acclaimed Dutch conductor Lawrence Renes, who has a long association with O’Neill and NZSO Music Director Edo de Waart. When O’Neill first performed with the San Francisco Opera in 2012 in John Adams’ Nixon in China, Renes was the conductor.
We have 2 double passes to give away to library members. All you need to do is tell us what the name of the new central library is and complete the competition entry form. Entries close at 5pm on Tuesday, 5 June and winners will be announced on Wednesday 6 June.
The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra’s 2018 season continues next month with a concert featuring works by Mozart and Mahler on Wednesday 11 April at Horncastle Arena.
International piano duo Christina and Michelle Naughton will perform Mozart’s Concerto for Two Pianos. The other piece performed for this concert will be Gustav Mahler’s Fifth Symphony. Composed in 1901, the beautiful Adagietto 4th movement is probably the most recognisable of Mahler’s compositions and has been played at significant events in history, including the funeral of Robert Kennedy. With its haunting strings and harp, it is Mahler’s love song to his wife, Alma.
We have 2 double passes to give away to library members. All you need to do is name the video eResource where you can find a 2004 performance of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 5 (the answer is in this blog post) and fill out the competition entry form. Entries close at 5pm on Tuesday, 3 April and winners will be announced on Wednesday 4 April.
The NZSO National Youth Orchestra are performing next month at the Isaac Theatre Royal as part of their summer concerts series. The orchestra is made up of mostly university students and the standard of musicianship is high. Teenage prodigy Matthias Balzat (who has been playing cello since the age of three) will perform under the baton of conductor Guy Noble.
We have 2 double passes to give away to library members. All you need to do is tell us your favourite New Zealand songwriter or composer and complete the competition entry form. Entries close at 5pm on Thursday, 25 January and winners will be announced on Friday 26 January.
Freddy plays piano and conducts at the same time. His previous appearance with the NZSO provoked standing ovations. This concert showcases piano favourites, with beautiful and powerful music that represents the history of the piano over the last 300 years.
The Pianomania programme is full of popular classics:
All you had to do to enter was name one of our Music eResources. We had a healthy number of entries but there were only 2 winners, namely:
Disappointed that you didn’t win?
You can listen to the pieces featured in next week’s concert (John Adams Shaker loops, Mozart’s Clarinet concerto in A major, and Beethoven’s Symphony no. 6 in F major, Pastorale) from the comfort of home (or the bus, or wherever) via Classical Music Library.
The New Zealand Symphony Orchestra’s 2017 season continues next month with a concert featuring works by Beethoven, Mozart, and John Adams on 4 April at Horncastle Arena. A free pre-concert talk also takes place 45 mins prior to the concert.
We have 2 double passes to give away to library members. All you need to do is name one of our music eResources and fill out the competition entry form. Entries close at 5pm on Monday, 27 March and winners will be announced on Tuesday 28 March.