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Friday, July 9, 2021


(Left: Conductor Lykele Temmingh)

COVID-19 and the national lockdown has not stopped the music of the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra (KZN Phil).

47 musicians from the KZN Philharmonic Orchestras participated in the symphonic repertoire at Virtual National Arts Festival. The 47th annual National Arts Festival - for the second time in its history - this year is being held entirely online due to the COVID-19 virus which has seen a lot of events either being postponed, made virtual or cancelled. The festival started on July 8 and ends on July 31, 2021. It is the ultimate virtual celebration of South African arts.

“After we had to cancel our Winter Season due to the third wave, the orchestra had to resort to other creative ways in order to continue uplifting spirits of people around the country by sharing the musical experience with their audiences. With the many challenges that the national lockdown has presented; the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra is amongst the many artists to be featured on this year’s Virtual National Arts Festival”, said Bongani Tembe, CEO and Artistic Director of the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra.

(Right: Aristide du Plessis)

The KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra, one of South Africa’s leading orchestras will present two concerts entitled The Joy of Symphonic Music with the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra Concert 1 and Concert 2, both of which were recorded live at Playhouse Opera Theatre in Durban, whilst observing all the COVID-related protocols.

Concert 1 will feature Tchaikovsky’s Serenade in C Major, Dvořák's Silent Woods with cellist Aristide du Plessis, and concludes with Haydn’s Symphony No. 104.

(Left: Andrew Warburton)

Concert 2 will open with an overture from Mozart’s opera Don Giovanni followed by Bloch's Concerto Grosso No. 1 with Durban pianist Andrew Warburton, and is rounded off with Mozart’s "Linz" Symphony. Both programmes will be introduced by Deano Maduramuthu, who is a popular radio presenter.

Tembe concluded: “Music lovers, all over South Africa and across the continent, can tune in to hear this great orchestra perform a specially curated programme for the virtual National Arts Festival. We hope this concert will uplift the spirit of South Africans during these trying times”.

Concerts 1 and 2, which were both conducted by Lykele Temmingh, will be aired as part of the vFringe live streamed events and tickets will cost just R100 per concert. These concerts will form part of the “videos-on-demand” offering and will be available to view until the end of July, thereby allowing audiences to view the orchestra’s performance at their leisure.


Concert 1 Ticket Link

Ticket price: R100

Duration: 60mins

All ages

Release date: July 8, 2021, to July 31, 2021 at 23h59


 Concert 2 Ticket Link

Ticket price: R100

Duration: 60mins

All ages

Release date: July 9, 2021, to July 31, 2021, at 23h59

The KZN Philharmonic Orchestra is a not-for-profit company and a public benefit organisation with a committed board of directors consisting of prominent business people and community leaders.

The Orchestra is chaired by business luminary, Saki Macozoma, and ably led for the past 25 years by Bongani Tembe, an accomplished Juilliard School trained singer and distinguished arts manager. Tembe’s strong vision fosters high artistic values and a commitment to engaging with the diverse communities of South Africa.

A comprehensive education, development and community engagement programme exposes more than 30,000 urban and township learners per year to music educational concerts, whilst the Orchestra also spends part of the year in the rural areas working with local schools and communities. In addition, the Orchestra presents its flagship World Symphony Series (WSS), which features four seasons of symphony concerts at the Durban City Hall and the Playhouse Opera Theatre.

For more information, click on the advert at the top of this artSMart page or visit