Musikwoche 2017

Dear Friends of the Musikwoche,

Time flies – and the start of our registration for the Swakopmunder Musikwoche 2017 is around the corner!
This year we begin on Friday, the 8th of December and we finish on Sunday, the 17th after the church concert.

Registration will open on the 28th of July and end on the 24th of November 2017.

Due to the withdrawal of Government funding for 40 brass players and 32 choir members, we were forced to close the Concert Band and Jazz Band and revert back to having only one Big Band – we DO hope that you will still come to enjoy making music!

The Concert Dates:

12.12.2015: Lecturer Concert, 19h00 at the Hanjo Böhlke Aula (Namib High School)

13.12.2015: Open Air Brass Festival, 16h00 at the Amphitheatre

14.12.2015: Junior & Ensemble Concert, 18h30 at the Hanjo Böhlke Aula (Namib High School)

15.12.2015 & 16.12.2015: Final Concert, 19h00 at the Hanjo Böhlke Aula (Namib High School)

17.12.2015: Church Concert, 10h00 at the Lutheran Church, Otavi st. no 9

Ticket sales:

As of the 1st of December, you can order by phone every morning between 9h00 and 12h00, the cell phone number will be announced closer to the time.

As of the 6th of December, you find us in the entrance of the Namib High School between 9h00 and 12h00 every morning (except Sunday, the 10th).

Ticket prices are N$ 90.- per ticket, children pay N$ 45,- at the Junior & Ensemble Concert. Please note that children under the age of six years are not permitted in the audience, except for the Junior & Ensemble Concert and the Open Air Brass Concert (this concert is free, but donations are welcome)!

What can we expect this year:

Ms Cornelia von Kerssenbrock

We start with a new musical director! Ms Cornelia von Kerssenbrock from Germany will be the new musical director of the Swakopmunder Musikwoche as of this year, and we are very happy to announce that she has committed herself for the next three years. Ms von Kerssenbrock, together with her husband, the singer Ludwig Baumann, directs and conducts the opera festival Gut Immling at Lake Chiemsee in Bavaria. She is considered one of the best female conductors of Europe and has worked as conductor in South- and North America and various countries in Eastern Europe. The Munich Symphonic Orchestra, the philharmonic state orchestra Halle / Saale, the Hamburg Symphonic Orchestra and many other orchestras have enjoyed working with her, and opera orchestras around the globe, including China, Switzerland, Poland and South American countries have successfully performed various operas under her guidance.

At the same time, Ms von Kerssenbrock is regularly conducting workshops for children and young musicians at Gut Immling and we very much look forward to welcoming our new musical director.

Ms von Kerssenbrock has decided to give a theme for each year, and this year we will start with the theme “Let’s Dance”. Next year the theme will be “Let’s Praise” and then the theme will be “Let’s go to the Opera”.

We will also welcome a new choir master, Ms Franziska Kuba from Leipzig, Germany, where she conducts the French-German choir “chorbeau” and regularly works with the choir of the Gewandhaus orchestra.

The Junior Orchestra will be in the expert hands of Hendi Krog and the Big Band will be conducted by Uli Petermann from Germany – he will also lecture the saxophones.

We are very happy that Denise Sutton is coming back as our concert master and lecturer for first violins, and Nicole D’Oliveira will be looking after the second violins.

Lecturer for violas is Elmarie van der Vyver and we welcome back Caleb Vaughn-Jones for the celli. Flutes will be lectured by Derek Fennell this year and John Rojas takes care of our oboes and bassoons again. Jenny Brand comes back as lecturer for clarinet and our brass section is led by Nici Coleman, who agreed to come back one more year… Percussions will be lectured by Daniel Nambassi the double bass section welcomes a new lecturer, Henrike Kovats and the recorder participants will again enjoy guidance by Jerome Cloete. We also welcome our new Junior Orchestra strings lecturer, Mathilda Horn and Kevin Gersteling will be back to assist the Junior Orchestra and in particular the celli.

Theodore Cookson from the Mascato choir will be assisting Ms Kuba and Bianca Wesley-Smith is assistant for 1st violins. Lwazi Mkula helps with the 2nd violins and Lynne Donson will assist with the celli. Caryn Pretorius supports the horn / brass section, as does Shannon Thebus, and Christin Röhl is back to support the trumpets. Andre Visser will work with John Rojas on the oboe and bassoon ensemble. Piano accompaniment this year will be done by Maria Bezuidenhout.

What music can we look forward to? We plan some dances from “Westside Story”, the jazz waltz from Shostakovich, Hungarian Dances and for choir and orchestra the “Liebeslieder Walzer” by Johannes Brahms and the bolero by Vangelis, theme melodiy from the movie “1492 – Conquest of Paradise”.

These are just a few appetizers, we will hear wonderful melodies around the theme “Let’s Dance”!

We call on all young (and not-so-young) musicians in Namibia (and elsewhere) to come and join us for a unique music festival and certainly the only of its kind in Southern Africa! Enjoy playing music together, meet wonderful musicians from all over the world, enjoy master classes with expert international lecturers!

We are looking forward to welcoming you in December.

Christiane Berker
Swakopmunder Musikwoche