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Thursday, October 4, 2012


Join the KZN Philharmonic in a romantic journey in this week’s concert of the World Symphony Series Spring Season tomorrow night (October 4).

Naum Rousine, one of the KZN Philharmonic’s resident conductors, will take the helm for a concert of excellent works, old and new. The programme features colourful compositions inspired by Mendelssohn’s travels, a gem by Beethoven, and an attractive Violin Concerto by Thomas Rajna.

Mendelssohn wrote his Hebrides Overture in 1830 after a visit to Fingal’s Cave in the Hebrides islands. Writing to his sister, Mendelssohn jotted down the opening theme of what would become one of his most effective concert overtures. Evocative of the cave and its interaction with the sea, the Hebrides Overture is a perfect blend of Romantic imagery and impeccable structure.

The first half closes with a recent work by Thomas Rajna, a Hungarian-born composer and pianist who has lived in South Africa for over 40 years. His Violin Concerto was composed in 2007, and has been championed by South African violinist Suzanne Martens, who joins the orchestra for this impressive and approachable work.

Suzanne Martens will return to open the second half of the concert with Beethoven’s Romance No. 2, which was actually his first effort in the violin and orchestra genre. This musically rich rondo offers a delectable contrast before Mendelssohn’s fourth symphonic essay. Mendelssohn’s “Italian” symphony was initially inspired by the same trip around Europe that prompted his Hebrides Overture. One of Mendelssohn’s happiest creations, the “Italian” designation stems from his experiences while touring Rome and Naples in particular, and ends with a lively saltarello dance.

Pre-concert talks take place at the Playhouse Alhambra Room at 18h15 on the night of each concert. Tomorrow night’s talk will be conducted by Dr Teddy Pillay.

The concert takes place tomorrow night (October 4) in the Durban City Hall at 19h30. Safe and subsidised parking is available at the Royal Hotel. For further information 031 369 9404 or 031 369 9438, e-mail or visit Booking for individual concerts is through Computicket on 0861 915 8000 or online at