Classical notes by William Charlton-Perkins:
Gearing up for the annual Festive Season concert, simply titled ‘Christmas’, are the Drakensberg Boys Choir, two conductors, pianists, organist and a host of specialist musicians to join them on the Pietermaritzburg City Hall stage on Thursday 30 November.This concert, which starts at 7pm, will see the full Drakensberg Boys Choir of over 110 boys, conducted, rather uniquely, by both principal conductors in one evening; Artistic Director Bernard Krüger and Kenny Kabak. Accompanist Lubabalo Dyasi will join the choir at the piano and will also lead the audience in the singing of traditional carols from the console of the historic and much-loved City Hall organ. Those attending will be invited to raise the roof in singing ‘Hark! The Herald Angels Sing’, ‘Once in Royal David’s City’ and ‘O, come all ye faithful’.
The Baroque 2000 ensemble will accompany the choir in a performance of selected numbers from Vivaldi’s Gloria and celebrated choruses including the sublime ‘Hallelujah Chorus’ from George Fredric Handel’s Messiah. This group of 15 professional and highly skilled musicians specialise in the authentic performance and historically informed performance of late 17th and early 18th century music. Messiah, performed annually in the city for the past 100 years or more, is bound get a fresh new look with this spirited rendition of chorus highlights.
Other items include ‘Santa Claus is coming to town’, ‘Star Carol’, ‘In dulci jubilo’ and the uniquely South African hymn ‘Come, colours rise’. There will be secure, patrolled parking in the City Hall, Tatham Art Gallery and Bessie Head Library precincts on the evening. ‘Christmas’ is presented by Music Revival is sponsored by Parklane SUPERSPAR in association with the City of Pietermaritzburg, CPW Printers, The Witness, Wedgewood Nougat and Coca-Cola Beverages South Africa. Booking www.ticketpro.co.za
South African TV personality Andy Capostagno will be sharing the stage with renowned soprano Nozuko Teto, and pianist, Christopher Duigan, at two special Christmas concerts in Durban. Music-lovers can look forward to an evening of readings, carols and seasonal music at the Grace Hall at Ashton International College in Ballito at 7.30 pm on Tuesday, December 5, and at St Agnes Church in Kloof at 7.30 pm on Friday, December 8.
Capostagno will entertain the audience with his humorous selections of seasonal stories, readings and anecdotes while Teto will sing ‘Ave Maria’, ‘Panis Angelicus’ and ‘O Holy Night’. Together they will lead the audience in carols with Duigan at the piano.
Andy Capostagno has been a familiar voice on Supersport for almost quarter of a century, commentating on everything from rugby to netball. Educated in Bath and Cambridge in the UK he is the author of four books and writes extensively for magazines and newspapers. He comes from a musical family and is a cattle and horse farmer in Lidgetton in real life.
Nozuko Teto studied in Durban and Cape Town. Thanks to a scholarship from the Nicolai Ghiaurov Foundation she was able to study with the famous soprano Mirella Freni in Italy. She sang in many concerts at the Teatro Comunale Pavarotti in Modena with the Puccini Festival Orchestra, in Amsterdam with the Concertgebouw Orchestra, with the Rotterdam Symphony, and she made her debut as Mimi in La Bohème in South Africa in 2010.
Finally, note that annual Rising Stars concert, presented by Friends of Music in collaboration with the South African Society of Music Teachers, takes place on Tuesday December 5 at 7.30pm at the Durban Jewish Centre, 44 KE Masinga Road (Old Fort). This important event features a line-up of highly talented young musicians from KwaZulu-Natal, who will be accompanied by a variety of pianists. Tickets at the door are R50 (adults) and R20 (students and scholars). Safe parking is provided.