Latest News Archive

Please select Category, Year, and then Month to display items
Previous Archive
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

Kovsie champ makes SA Paralympic swimmers team
2015-06-05

Johann van Heerden
Photo: Supplied

Johann van Heerden will fly the Kovsie flag high in this year’s International Paralympic Committee (lPC) Swimming Championships in Glasgow. The University of the Free State first-year BEd student is one of 10 South Africans representing our country.

According to the South African Sports Confederation and Olympic Committee, 640 swimmers from about 50 countries are to plunge and stroke their way to the touch plates from 13-19 July.

“I first started swimming because I had a fit when I was born and it caused me to have Cerebral Palsy. My parents thought that, because my right-hand-side functioning was not good, swimming might help strengthen my muscles,” said Johann.

His parents played a major role in influencing the beginning of his professional swimming career.

Lauren van Heerden, Johann’s father, said, “I am so excited for him, and I am proud that he will be representing our country overseas. It is a big competition so it is a good experience for him.”

Qualifying for the IPC championships has proved that hard work pays off. As his coach, Mark Markgraaff, puts it: “Johann must go out there and have fun, most importantly; he will reap the benefits of his hard work.”

It is not only his parents and coach that Johann has made proud; Hetsie Veitch, Assistant Director of the Unit for Students with Disabilities, also expressed how proud she is.

“Since I’ve known him, he has been a very determined young man who is dedicated to his sport.”

The Rio Paralympics is where Johann envisions being next year.

We use cookies to make interactions with our websites and services easy and meaningful. To better understand how they are used, read more about the UFS cookie policy. By continuing to use this site you are giving us your consent to do this.

Accept