From Newsletter by Ben Schoeman
In this issue:
- Standard Bank Young Artist for Music 2011
- Performing Brahms Concerto no. 2 in
- Recitals of Works by South African Composers in Turin and Savona
- Centenary Celebrations of the Royal Overseas league at St James’s Palace
- Concerts at Festivals in England and Scotland
- Two-Piano Recital with pianist Matei Varga at the Romanian Atheneum in Bucharest on 23 November 2010, 19.00
for Music 2011
from Richard Cock.
The Young Artist Awards are acknowledged as one of the most prestigious of their kind to honour young South African artists who have demonstrated exceptional ability in their chosen fields by providing them with financial support and a platform for experimentation at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown.
The winners are also given various opportunities to represent South Africa on international stages as a result of their association with the award. As part of his award Ben will perform as soloist with the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra at the National Arts Festival in Grahamstown in July 2011.
“Based on artistic excellence, accomplishment to date, and the promise of future achievement, the winners of the 2011 Standard Bank Young Artist Awards are five remarkable individuals who are on top of their game. Their creativity, talent and fortitude is making a significant contribution to the cultural vibrancy of our country,” said National Arts Festival Director Ismail Mahomed at the awards ceremony.
Since the inception of the awards in 1981, and including the 2011 recipients, a total of 110 awards have been presented. Some previous winners include William Kentridge and Sibongile Khumalo.
In his review in die Burger of 27 August he said:
“What I shall remember is Schoeman’s wonderful playing in the slow movement. His beautiful tonal sound was an experience and the way in which he completed Brahms’ long lines of double melodies that lie octaves apart, showed enormous musical insight and pianistic command.”
Brahms Concerto no. 2 in Cape Town.
Ben Schoeman’s recent nationwide
tour of 23 concerts received
rave reviews and he was praised
for his “dazzling virtuosity”
(Pretoria News) as well as his
(Classic Feel Magazine).
Recitals of Works by South African Composers in Turin and Savona
In October Ben performed works of Stefans Grové, Peter Klatzow, Hendrik Hofmeyr, Surendran Reddy and Andile Khumalo at the annual EstOvest Festival in Turin, which specialises not only in contemporary classical music, but also in traditional music. The theme for this year was Africa. The Festival is organised by the Xenia Ensemble:
Several concerts were held in Turin and Savona theatres as well as at an outreach concert at a local school in Turin. He also performed the Sonata for violin and piano by Hofmeyr, in collaboration with Romanian violinist Adrian Pinzaru. The well-informed audiences were very appreciative of the music with their distinctive African character, evoking a naïve, romantic longing for a bygone African reality, wide open planes, sundrenched prosperity, carefree dances, possessed witch doctors and a romanticized nocturnal atmosphere.
On 2 June Ben had the privilege of being introduced to HRH the Duke of Edinburgh at the centenary celebration reception in the gracious presence of HM The Queen, Patron of the Royal Overseas League and HRH Princess Alexandra, Vice-Patron. This event was the centre piece of this year’s celebratory events of ROSL.
Between June and September Ben gave recitals at several summer music festivals such as the Chester, King’s Lynn, Hampstead and Edinburgh Festivals. He performed works of a wide range of composers, including Bach, Scarlatti, Beethoven, Schubert, Liszt, Chopin, Franck, Poulenc, Messiaen and Prokofiev to very enthusiastic festival audiences.