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Friday, April 17, 2015


(Conductor Lionel Bringuier)

KZN classical music lovers are in for a treat when the acclaimed 58-member Alma Chamber Orchestra appears in Durban with the KZN Philharmonic. The orchestra is performing for the first time in South Africa as part of their world tour with concerts in Johannesburg, Durban and Soweto from April 22 to 25.

The ‘World Tour for Unity’ is presented by The Ichikowitz Family Foundation and the Alma Nostra Foundation in Paris, and includes a series of concerts led by concertmaster and artistic director, Anne Gravoin, with the famous Brazilian pianist Nelson Freire, under the direction of Lionel Bringuier. The programme will include works by Beethoven, Mendelssohn and Wael Binali.

Ivor Ichikowitz, founder of the Ichikowitz Family Foundation and sponsor of the South African tour, said " We all strive for a more peaceful, tolerant and prosperous world, and through the medium of world-class music, our respective Foundations are bringing this message to South Africa on the eve of the 21st anniversary of our country's peaceful democratic transition. We are greatly privileged to share with South Africans the chance to listen to such an accomplished orchestra.”

The Alma Chamber Orchestra’s tour to South Africa, in the spirit of unity, will also launch the European Union’s Europefest 2015 programme. All the European Embassies have gathered their cultural events together during the month of May under one umbrella to form the EuropeFest 2015. Their vision is to celebrate cultural diversity.

Audiences in Durban can look forward to this collaboration with South Africa’s leading orchestra, the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra, and the Alma Chamber Orchestra for an unprecedented experience. The programme will include Beethoven’s Egmont Overture and Concerto No 4, Symphony No 4 by Mendelssohn and Earth by Wael Binali.

Members of The Alma Chamber Orchestra will host master classes in Durban and Umlazi on April 24 to facilitate collaborative education, signifying unity through music.

“I am delighted that The Alma Chamber Orchestra will be collaborating with the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra on a rare and exceptional tour. I am particularly pleased that The Alma Chamber Orchestra will, in addition to presenting symphony concerts in Johannesburg and Durban, undertake music development initiatives in Umlazi Township and Soweto," said Bongani Tembe, Artistic Director of the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra and Commissioner-General of the France-South Africa Seasons 2012 and 2013.

Zouhir Boudemagh, the President of the Alma Nostra Foundation notes, “We are delighted to be in South Africa to join in the celebrations of 21 years of Democracy. We’ve just returned from touring North Africa (Algeria, Tunisia and Morocco) and this will be a glorious celebration of cultural unity and affirmation of universal humanitarian values.”

The Durban concert will take place on April 23 at 19h30 at the Durban City Hall. Booking is at Computicket .

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