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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

Water Collection Campaign distributes 3 500 bottles in Free State
2016-02-19

 Description: KL News 2016 02 19 Water Tags: KL News 2016 02 19 Water
The Muslim Students Association (MSA), along with the Gift of the Givers Foundation, collected 3 500 5l bottles of water that was distributed to disadvantaged areas within the Free State. From left is Muhammed Bhamjee, President of MSA, Emily Thomas, project manager for Gift of the Givers Foundation, and Grace Jansen, one of the generous donors. Photo: Charl Devenish.

The Muslim Student Association (MSA) at the University of the Free State (UFS) took it upon themselves to respond to the regional water crisis being experienced in the Free State. Under the leadership of Muhammed Bhamjee, President of MSA, the association started an initiative to collect water for the purpose of distributing it to disadvantaged areas within the Free State.

The drive started out as just a humble request within the student community, but it gained a great deal of attention from staff, departments, and students from the UFS. The response was overwhelming; 3 500 5l bottles of water were donated.

Amongst the donors were the Student Affairs department and Grace Jansen, wife of Prof Jonathan Jansen, Vice-Chancellor and Rector of the UFS. Mrs Jansen said it was important for her to make a contribution: “Even though we are receiving, we need to give as well. Wherever there is a need, we need to be involved.” She believes the project has the ability to grow and gain more attention and support. She believes it needs to grow across communities to solve such problems together.

Bhamjee explains that the MSA has had a relationship with Gift of the Givers Foundation, as they have been running the campaign for quite some time. “We just felt that it’s our responsibility to get involved. Even with the little we can do, every bit counts at the end of the day.” He added that there is also a need to support fellow students at the UFS Qwaqwa Campus.

Emily Thomas, project manager for Gift of the Givers Foundation, applauds the MSA initiative, and encourages students to continue collaborating with the foundation to assist with disaster situations.

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