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Saturday, October 14, 2023


The KZN Philharmonic Orchestra has announced the details of its 2023 World Symphony Series Spring Season – a momentous occasion which marks the Orchestra’s 40th Anniversary. It will run in the Playhouse Opera Theatre between October 19 and November 9, each Thursday concert commencing at 19h00.

Bongani Tembe, the KZN Philharmonic’s Chief Executive and Artistic Director, says: “It is scarcely credible how the years have flown by since our Orchestra was launched, back in the Spring of 1983. The KZN Philharmonic has achieved many highwater marks during its progress down the decades. Perhaps the most durable of these was the launch of our iconic World Symphony Series during the 1990’s.

“The Symphony Series, which has attracted a wealth of global talent to our concert platform, is still going strong. We would like to express out deep appreciation for the loyalty and support we have enjoyed from generations of concert goers, who have flocked to our concerts since Day One. Please know it is our privilege to share the music we make with each of you.

“Some of our patrons would prefer not to drive themselves to the concerts – so the KZN Phil management has initiated a free Park and Ride service for those who would prefer to park closer to home and catch a bus to the Playhouse. Two routes will be available on a complimentary basis for this season only - a North Coast route and one for the Upper Highway Area. Safe parking will be offered at both venues. KZN Philharmonic management office can provide more details on request.

German conductor Justus Franz returns to the podium on October 19, the opening programme paying tribute to one of South Africa’s most phenomenally gifted musicians. Shalati Joseph Khoza, who died in 2013, was known as the Musical Prodigy of Africa. He composed close on 1,000 pieces. He will be represented by an extract from his song collection titled Vun’we (The Power of Unity).

Thereafter pianist, Valentina Lisitsa will perform one of the world's best loved warhorses, the iconic Piano Concerto No. 2 by Sergei Rachmaninoff to honour 150 years since his birth on April 1, 1873 (and 80 years since his death in 1943).

Dvořák’s ‘New World’ Symphony follows after intermission. Composed in 1893 while the Czeck master was the director of the National Conservatory of Music of America, its posthumous status has long been secured. Astronaut Neil Armstrong took a tape recording of the New World Symphony along during the Apollo 11 mission, the first Moon landing in 1969.

Spanish conductor Irene Delgado-Jiménez - a protegee of Marin Alsop - makes her debut appearance on the KZN Philharmonic’s podium on October 26. She has aptly chosen Robert Schumann’s idyllic Spring Symphony as her opening item. It was the first completed symphonic work he composed, and its premiere took place under the baton of Felix Mendelssohn on March 31, 1841 in Leipzig, where the symphony was warmly received. Its popularity has never waned. After intermission, violinist Nikita Boriso-Glebsky will share the benefits of his close association with Beethoven’s much loved Violin Concerto in D Major, a work which lies at the heart of all violin literature.

Local favourite Daniel Boico returns to the podium on November 2, 2023, with a crowd-pleasing line-up. Schubert’s joyous Rosamunde Overture and Max Bruch’s hyper-melodic Symphony No. 3 bookend Beethoven’s grandly imposing Piano Concerto in C minor, performed by Russia’s internationally acclaimed master-pianist Nikita Mndoyants.

The season climaxes on November 9 with American maestro Robert Moody’s beautifully curated programme, comprising Dvořák’s symphonic poem Mein Heim (My Home) and Sir Edward Elgar’s nostalgic Cello Concerto. Composed just after the First World War, it will be performed by the incomparable Canadian cellist Bryan Cheng. The soaring strains of the Sibelius Fifth Symphony bring the curtain down on a high note.

Book tickets for the KZN Philharmonic’s 2023 Spring Season through Quicket / call 031-369 9438.

There will be Tea and Symphony concerts for the final rehearsal every Thursday morning at 10h00 in the Playhouse Opera. Tickets R50 adults throughout. Unreserved seating downstairs stalls, and the Playhouse coffee corner is open for coffee and light snacks.

Suggested parking for the morning concert is at the Royal Hotel parkade, and evening parking at the Albany and Royal Hotels.

The bars are no longer open at the Playhouse; however, tea and coffee and non-alcoholic drinks can be purchased prior to concerts and during interval at the Playhouse coffee corner.

For more information call 031 369 9438, email or visit

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