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OSM Camerata records CD with world-renowned cellist
2014-05-14

In 2010, South African cellist Heleen du Plessis, Executant lecturer for cello at the University of Otago, initiated the project “Cello for Africa”. The objective was to record a CD of new South African compositions for cello, reflecting the multi-cultural context of the country.

Du Plessis received an extensive research grant from the University of Otago in order to realise the project by commissioning, premièring and recording music. The aim was to facilitate a dialogue between Western and African musical traditions, as well as between the cello and indigenous African instruments.

Hans Huyssen, composer and cellist, has been closely involved in indigenous African music for a considerable time. In light of his extensive international experience, the SAMRO Foundation has granted Du Plessis' request to commission Huyssen to this task.

A world premiere concert preceded the recordings at the UFS’ Odeion School of Music (OSM) in March 2013, partially funded by a Humanities Research Grant as well as the OSM. This event provided a collaborative platform for musicians from different cultural backgrounds and several institutions to contribute towards a cultural and musical exchange. The funding enabled the project to successfully conclude in the recording of the CD, “Cello for Africa”. It was released by ODE records – the New Zealand label for classical music.

The OSM Camerata (OSMC) is the flagship ensemble of the OSM and was founded in 2012 with the main objective to kindle and forge the talents of exceptionally gifted students and pursue the highest artistic standards possible.

The OSMC participated in 2013 in the 13th International Conservatoire Festival hosted at the Rimsky Korsakov Conservatoire in St Petersburg, Russia. The OSMC received a standing ovation during their gala performance in the Glazonov Hall with a programme by South African composers Stefans Grové and Hendrik Hofmeyr.

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