(Maestro Richard Cock)
Music lovers should head to the hills for the third annual Michaelhouse Music Festival, taking place over the month-end April long weekend. The four-day festival kicks off on Freedom Day on April 27 and concludes on April 30.
Following on from an overwhelmingly enthusiastic response from the past two years, the weekend programme has been thoughtfully-curated to offer a smorgasbord of world-class music to cater for a myriad music lovers who can enjoy the best of South African pop, choral, acoustic, jazz and classical music in the tranquil setting of Balgowan.
Pietermaritzburg’s own Idols star and student teacher and last year’s winner of Idols SA season 12 Noma Khumalo, will be joined by legendary vocalist Sibongile Khumalo
Big names performing at the festival are Cape Town based live electronic duo The Kiffness and Durban’s Easy Freak (a new Durban-based two-piece performing an eclectic mix of Funk/Pop/Soul/Electro and other sounds combined) and Rubber Duc: an independent, fresh, four-piece band. Also on the bill is Michaelhouse’s Pillar Box Red comprising four Michaelhouse scholars.
Ending the festival on a high note will be Africa’s foremost professional orchestra, the KZN Philharmonic led jointly by maestro Richard Cock and Michaelhouse’s William Silk.
Regular music gig, Music in The Hills, moves for the weekend from its regular home The Knoll Barn to Michaelhouse especially for the Michaelhouse Music Festival, so their line-up will be part of the festival. Be entertained by both professionals and amateurs, or grab a spot in one of the open mic slots to perform and share your music with a friendly supportive music-loving audience. The MiTH Tent will be located next to the Music Festival Entertainment Area and Food Court (outside the Indoor Centre).
The festival starts on April 27 with a programme entitled Choral Sounds celebrating the beauty of the human voice with young singers from UP Youth Choir, Michaelhouse, Constantia Park and Howick Prep.
Friday afternoon sees the KZN Youth Orchestra take to the stage for an easy listening gentle Friday afternoon programme of orchestral favourites. The evening highlight will be two of South Africa’s most loved voices who share generations of talent, and a last name: Sibongile Khumalo and Noma Khumalo.
Saturday starts the day with some musical nostalgia with Days Gone By performed by the Michaelhouse Staff Music Quintet. There will be a lunch recital of classical marimba music. Saturday evening see some of the best contemporary performers on stage together: The Kiffness; Rubber Duc; Easy Freak and Pillar Box Red.
A gentle start to Sunday morning with Two’s Company but a Trio’s Better performing music from Beethoven and Mozart played professional musicians on flute, violin and viola. The Sunday mid-morning concert is Choral Elite with the KZN Midlands Youth Choir, the new Drakondale Girls’ Choir, Clifton Notties Prep Choir and Pietermaritzburg Children’s Choir.
The lunch time concert features Youth Performers with the KZN Philharmonic Ensemble under the baton of William Silk with the KZN Midlands Youth Choir and soloists. Sunday afternoon sees Christopher Duigan (piano) and Junnan Sun (clarinet) performing piano and clarinet sonatas and variations by Saint-Saëns and Rossini.
The weekend programme wraps up with a rousing finale comprising the KZN Philharmonic conducted by Richard Cock and William Silk featuring KZN Midlands Youth Choir, Clifton Notties Prep Choir, Drakondale Girls’ Choir, Pietermaritzburg Children’s Choir, Michaelhouse Chapel Choir and a number of soloists.
The Michaelhouse Music Festival is well on its way to establishing itself as a Red Letter Day in every lover of music's calendar and can be enjoyed from April 27 to 30. Tickets are available to purchase from www.tickethut.co.za/michaelhouse
For more info like the festival’s Facebook page, Michaelhouse Music Festival or contact the school on 033 234 1000 or www.michaelhouse.org
Visit www.mith.co.za for further details about Music in The Hills component: the Midlands' weekly amateur music club.