Nicolene Gibbons - Piano and Composition


Nicolene Gibbons was born in Bloemfontein. She studied piano at the University of the Free State with Catharina Struthers while taking composition classes with Prof Johann Potgieter. Nicolene played on radio and television, especially her compositions, from a young age. She obtained her BAMus qualification at the UFS with Nettie Immelman as piano lecturer.

She won overseas study bursaries from SAMRO, UNISA and ABRSM. Nicolene obtained a BMusHons cum laude at the University of Cape Town under the tutelage of Lamar Crowson. 

She then continued her studies at the Royal College of Music (London), where she received her master’s degree in piano performance. Gibbons then obtained a master’s degree in composition from the University of Cambridge.

Nicolene has worked for almost 30 years as a pianist, composer, and teacher in England, including at the University of Cambridge and the Uppingham School.

Later she specialized in chamber music and lied accompaniment. She moved back to South Africa five years ago and is now working and staying in Philippolis. She recently participated in the Klein Karoo Klassique with cellist Anmari van der Westhuizen. Nicolene’s solo concert in Bloemfontein as part of the Vrystaat Klank & Klassik was met with great enthusiasm.

She currently serves as piano lecturer at the OSM in an ad-hock capacity.

Chris van Zyl - Cellist

Chris van Zyl

Cellist Chris van Zyl started his career as cellist under the tutelage of Michael Haller, then cellist of the Odeion String Quartet at the University of the Free State. He made his debut as soloist at the age of 11 with Nataniel and the Bloemfontein Mens' Choir. As finalist in the Grahamstown Music Society Concerto Competition, he performed as soloist with Rhodes University Symphony Orchestra at the age of 13. In 2011, he was appointed principal cellist of the Stellenbosch Chamber Music Festival Orchestra and performed the solo cello part in the world premiere of "Kasi", composed by Hendrik Hofmeyr. In 2012, he obtained the Advanced Performance Certificate in cello (Trinity College London) with distinction and was awarded the Trinity College Exhibition Award for the highest achievement in cello in South Africa. In 2013, he joined the OSM Camerata and participated in the International Orchestra Festival in St Petersburg, Russia. In 2016, Chris attended master classes at the Gulbenkian Institute in Portugal under Varoujan Bartikian.In the same year Chris won the runner up strings prize at the National Music Competition. He was invited to participate in the 2017 Unisa music competition where he received the Du Toit van Tonder scholarship . In 2018, he toured as the principal cellist with the MIAGI orchestra and played in world-renown concert halls like the Elbphilharmonie(Hamburg), the Royal Consertgebouw (Netherlands) and the Konzerthaus (Berlin). Chris has also played in an orchestra at festivals such as the Immling festival (Germany) and the Gustav Mahler festival (Italy). Masterclasses with Boris Kerimov (Russia), Julian Arp (Germany), Anzel Gerber (Pretoria), Alexander Ramm (Russia), Heleen du Plessis (New Zealand), Karolina Ohman (Sweden, specialist in contemporary music), Jerome Pernoo (France), Maria Kliegel (Germany) and Ben Capps (USA) added to his journey as a cellist. He was invited as a faculty member of the International Gauteng Chamber Music Festival in 2017 and 2019 respectively. He finished his Bachelor in Music degree under the tutelage of famous South African cellist, Anmari van der Westhuizen in 2019 . Chris is currently enrolled for his Master’s degree in music performance at Bard College Conservatory of Music and won a position in the studio of award winning cellist Peter Wiley, famous cellist of the Guarneri string Quartet and teacher at Curtis Institute of Music and Bard College Conservatory of Music. Chris regularly performs in The Orchestra Now (TON), under conductor, Maestro Leon Botstein and has performed in the Fisher Centre, Peter Jay Sharp Theatre at Symphony Space, The Metropolitan Museum of Art and Carnegie Hall.

Willem Oosthuysen - Composer, Producer 


Willem Oosthuysen is an award-winning composer, orchestrator, music director, and music educator based in New York. His musicals include #MARS (with Laura Kleinbaum, NYFA, Manhattan Musical Theatre Lab), Prodigy (CCU, NYU, Two Rivers Theatre Company, Indiana University, and finalist for the Yale Institute of Music Theater Conference), Two Bugs Are Better Than One (New York City’s Children’s Theater, Walnut Street Theatre), Cinderella (commissioned/produced by Spotlight Youth Theater)and To Have And To Hold (Prospect Theater Company, Barrington Stage, Denver Fringe), all with Jenny Stafford.  

His short operas include Eternal Rest (NYU and American Opera Projects), The Watering Hole (NYU), both with a libretto by Tristen Moseley, as well as Fairy Tale Suite - Three Short Operas: A Visit to Baba Yaga, Tin Heart, Tinsel Rose, & The Winter Giant (libretto by Chandra McClelland, commissioned by Badlands Opera Project).  

Willem’s work has been featured at Lincoln Center, Joe’s Pub, The BMI Workshop Spotlight, 54 Below, Prospect Theater, and numerous other NYC venues. He’s been an artist in residence at Goodspeed, CAP21, Berkshires Musical Theatre Lab, and THEatre Accelerator (Apples and Oranges Studios). He holds an MFA from NYU’s Graduate Musical Theatre Writing Program (Tisch School of the Arts), completed his Advanced Certification in Music Education at Brooklyn College, and is a member of the BMI Musical Theatre Advanced Workshop, ASCAP (Plus Award winner 2018) and the Dramatists Guild.  

Some of his recent orchestrations include the operetta By Georges! A Day In The Life of the Legendary Chevalier de Saint-Georges (commissioned and produced by Lamplighters Music Theater), and the musical, Le Comte Noir - A New Musical About the Real Count of Monte Cristo (produced by Manhattan School of Music), both with music and lyrics by Charles Vincent Burwell and James D. Sasser. 

He is a music teacher at Dr. Sun Yat Sen M.S. 131 Middle School in Manhattan and has been a music director and teacher at the Queens College Musical Theater Summer Camp, Brooklyn Prospect Charter School, and Nightingale-Bamford School. Willem has also been a teaching artist with the Disney Theatrical Group, TADA! Youth Theater, and the New York Pops. 

Willem is the pianist, and a contributing composer/arranger for the New York based band, Em & the Fates. Their EP and several singles are all available to stream/buy on iTunes, Spotify, etc. Performance venues include Rockwood Music Hall, Bowery Electric, Mercury Lounge, and The Bitter End. 

"I Am" from the short opera, "Eternal Rest"



T: +27 51 401 2240 or

Marizanne Cloete: +27 51 401 2592

Neliswa Emeni-Tientcheu: +27 51 401 2536
Phyllis Masilo: +27 51 401 9683

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