JPO’s World Symphony Series continues in 2018


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The Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO)
The Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO)

The Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO) has announced details of its 2018 Winter Season. The JPO season runs at the Linder Auditorium in Parktown between 30 May and 21 June. One of four programmes will be presented each week during the season, with Wednesday evening performances reprised the following Thursday evening. The season will be presented as part of the renowned World Symphony Series (WSS), which was launched in Durban 22 years ago and was introduced to JPO audiences late last year.

Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra Winter 2018 Programme
Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra Winter 2018 Programme (Click to open image in browser)

“We are excited to continue with the second leg of our 2018 World Symphony Series, presenting an array of top flight international conductors and soloists to our concert platforms, along with prominent South African artists, whilst continuing to carry out the Orchestra’s broad mission of developing its dynamic artistic vision,” said Bongani Tembe, Chief Executive and Artistic Director of the Johannesburg and KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestras.

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“We continue to focus on offering music-making of the highest excellence to the city of Johannesburg. This endeavour dovetails with our community engagement programmes. By presenting a series of world class concerts, as well as promoting the transfer of skills to young musicians, the Johannesburg Philharmonic remains committed to enriching the cultural life of all South Africa’s citizens.

As before, our season runs at Johannesburg’s beautifully appointed Linder Auditorium and our audiences are assured of a feast of fine music-making by the gifted artists who will collaborate with the JPO in bringing our programmes to life.”

Following the success of his JPO debut last season Daniel Boico returns to the Orchestra’s podium to open its 2018 Winter Season on Wednesday and Thursday, 30 and 31 May. What better way to do so than with Shostakovich’s jubilant Festival Overture? Written at lightning speed, it is said to have rivalled even Mozart’s legendary pace. Its premiere at the Bolshoi Theatre in 1954 sparked the colourful and richly scored work’s popularity as a concert curtain-raiser sure to increase the pulse of anticipation in an audience.

American composer George Gershwin’s Concerto in F, a signature piece of the first soloist of the season, South Africa’s “Piano Man”, Charl du Plessis – concludes the first half of the programme. Tchaikovsky’s Symphony No.1 in g Minor, “Winter Daydreams” brings the evening’s programme to a close.

Brandon Phillips, Cape Town based conductor, takes the podium on 6 and 7 June. He opens with Beethoven’s powerfully expressive Egmont Overture, one of the last works of the composer’s middle period, written in a style similar to the Fifth Symphony, which pre-dated it by two years. Édouard Lalo’s Cello Concerto in d minor follows with the renowned Russian cellist, Alexander Buzlov as soloist, and Schumann’s Symphony No.3 “The Rhenish” rounds off the evening on a pastoral note.

The evenings of 13 and 14 June sees South African born conductor Conrad van Alphen on the podium, opening his programme with a performance of Mendelssohn’s Ruy Blas Overture. Taking centre stage, the celebrated Russian soloist Nikita Boriso-Glebsky takes on the challenges of Sibelius’s towering Violin Concerto, and the season’s third programme rounds off a with Dvoák: Symphony No.5 in F Major Op. 76

Conductor: Cathrine Winnes brings the season to a close on 20 and 21 June with pianist Spencer Myer occupying the evening’s solo slot. The season features performances of Glinka’s Summer Night in Madrid Overture, Grieg’s Piano Concerto in a minor, and Rimsky-Korsakov’s exotic symphonic poem, Scheherazade.

Season tickets for the Johannesburg Philharmonic’s World Symphony Series 2018 Winter Season are available through Computicket. Call 0861 915 8000 or book online at  For more information, visit

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