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18 September 2018 Photo Hanno Otto
Consecutive international win for OSM Camerata
The OSM Camerata is once again a winner, sharing the first prize in the Ictus International Music Competition with the Oklahoma State University.

If Einstein’s string theory had a musical undertone, one would think it is because of the sweet melodies of the Odeion School of Music Cameratas’ (OSMC) violins and cellos. It should therefore come as no surprise that OSMC won the 2018 International Ictus Music Competition, again. The ensemble has been paving the way to numerous successes since its inception in 2012.

This year, however, the OSMC is sharing the first prize with the Oklahoma State University Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Dr Thomas Dickey. The OSMC’s competition recital for 2018 was conducted by principle conductor, Xavier Cloete. Acclaimed violist Elsabé Raath, joined the OSMC artistic team in 2017 as string clinician.

OSMC the jewel in crown

The OSMC is based at the Odeion School of Music (OSM) at the University of the Free State UFS) and was strategically founded as the OSM’s flagship ensemble with the main objective, creating a catalyst for excellence. “From a pedagogical perspective, it serves as a feasible incubator to nurture fully-rounded musicians who are thoroughly prepared for the demands of their trade as orchestral musicians, soloists and conductors,” said Marius Coetzee founder of the OSMC.

“Ms Raath also made her debut as conductor during the 2018 Ictus Music Competition where she conducted O Sacrum Convivium by Olivier Messiaen,” said Coetzee, founder of the OSMC. Elsabé was also conductor during the 2018 Ictus Music competition.

The OSMC’s concert programme for Ictus 2018 also consisted of works by Jacobus Gallus/Lance Phillip, Béla Bartók, Peteris Vasks/Keith Moss, as well as Johann Sebastian Bach.

Ictus an ideal platform


The Ictus International Music Competition is an online music competition for wind bands, orchestras and solo trumpet. It has been described by David Bilger of the Philadelphia Orchestra as “democratising music competitions”. Ictus was founded to make international music competitions more accessible though eliminating prohibitive travel costs, conference fees and visa issues. This was made possible through having the application and adjudication take place online only. 

You can listen to OMSC Ictus submissions here:

Duo Seraphim Jabobus Gallus/Lance Phillip
Romanian Folk Dances/ Román népi táncok Béla Bartók
Kekatu Dziesma (Carnival Song) Peteris Vasks/Keith Moss

News Archive

A mind shift needed in agriculture in Africa
2010-12-02

Prof. Frans Swanepoel (Centre for Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development), Prof. Monty Jones, Prof. Driekie Hay (Vice-Rector: Teaching and Learning), Prof. Alice Pell (Cornell University, USA), and Prof. Izak Groenewald (Director of the Centre for Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development) at the inaugural lecture of Prof. Jones as Professor Extraordinary. 
- Photo: Stephen Collett

Food stability is essential for stability in all countries around the world. Radical interventions, and not incremental changes, are necessary to end hunger and poverty in Africa, said Prof. Monty Jones, Professor Extraordinary in the Centre for Sustainable Agriculture and Rural Development at the University of the Free State (UFS), in his inaugural lecture.

Prof. Jones is Executive Director of the Forum for Agricultural Research in Africa (FARA) and Chairperson of the Global Forum on Agricultural Research (GFAR). In his lecture he focused on the contribution of agricultural research to development and food security in Sub- Saharan Africa.

He said Africa is not known for good politics to promote food production. Countries under invest in research, education, knowledge management, agriculture finance, etc. There is also uncertain and restricted access to land. He specially mentioned women’s access.

Sub- Sahara Africa moved from being a net exporter of food to a net importer of food (28%). “Government spending on agriculture and transport went down and stagnated. A mind shift is necessary. Africa has the resources. We must take advantage of the opportunities,” he said, and added: “Africa must create visionary and inspirational leaders and managers who can drive developmental issues.”

Prof. Jones emphasised that fact that nutritional security is just as important as food security. The number of hungry people has grown to more than a billion in 2009. Hunger is the most severe in the developing world, especially Africa. Added to this is Africa’s population growth that i s also higher than the rest of the world. It is estimated that the demand for food in Africa will double in the next 40 years.

“Research and development alone cannot win the war against hunger in Africa. Everyone has a role to play,” he said.
– Leatitia Pienaar.

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