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Relict Furies

March 15, 2016

Relict Furies
NZSO strings,
Margaret Medlyn

Wellington Cathedral of St Paul
March 15, 2016

This was a fascinating concert. Two beautiful English works for string orchestra, an Australian work by a modern master, and a nearly unbearably intense set of songs getting their New Zealand premiere produced an intriguing mix of traditional and modern beautifully performed, but slightly uneven in effect.

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Hable con ella

March 13, 2016

Hable con ella (Talk to Her)
Pedro Almodóvar (2002)
Wellington City Gallery
March 13, 2016

The third and final ‘Pina’ film. Which is sad because I’ve really enjoyed them all, but also great because next week I get to see her work for real live on stage!

So fittingly this film opens with a performance by Pina herself of Café Müller which is to be the first half of next week’s show! Watching this performance are the two men who are to be dragged together by the intricate and unstoppable fate that Almodóvar gives them.

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E la nave va

March 13, 2016

E la nave va (And the Ship Sails On)
Federico Fellini (1983)
Wellington City Gallery
March 6, 2016

This was the second in the Pina Bausch-related film screenings at City Gallery. I had never seen any Fellini before and yet he is one of the biggest names in art film, so I thought it would be worth a shot. And it was! Apparently this is one of his late period lesser-regarded films, but I loved it.

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A Night with Jazz at Lincoln Center

March 13, 2016

A Night with Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra with Wynton Marsalis
Michael Fowler Centre
March 12, 2016

It’s hard to imagine that it could be possible for any other big band to beat these guys at what they do. As a showcase of ensemble and solo playing and a demonstration of all the things this combination of instruments can do it was close to perfect.

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Sila: The Breath of the World

March 6, 2016

John Luther Adams
Sila: The Breath of the World
Performed by Wellington Orchestra
Civic Square, 5pm, March 5th, 2016

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Imagine if you were commissioned to write a work for orchestra that had to be:

  • about an hour long,
  • performed outdoors in a public space, without a conductor,
  • be immune to random city noise, people wandering around and talking, and
  • could grab the interest of people who just happen to be passing through, regardless of when they arrive.

Maybe these requirements would lead you inevitably to composing this exact piece?

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Miyata-Yoshimura-Suzuki Trio

March 3, 2016

St Andrew’s on the Terrace
28 February 2016
As the programme pointed out, this was ‘real Festival fare’: three masterful Japanese musicians demonstrating what their instruments can do in traditional and modern repertoire. The trio consisted of Tosiya Suzuki (recorder) Mayumi Miyata (sho) and Nanae Yoshimura (koto).

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Dancing Dreams: In the Footsteps of Pina Bausch

February 28, 2016

Directed by Rainer Hoffmann and Anne Linsel, 2010.
City Gallery Auditorium
February 28 2016
Event page

After Friday’s ballet bonanza and with tickets booked for Pina Bausch’s Rite of Spring right at the end of the festival, a free screening of a documentary about dance seemed like a great idea.

And great idea it was! ‘Dancing Dreams’ was the best kind of art documentary, giving ample demonstration of why art is important, and the value that performing can have for anyone, regardless of whether they are the greatest in the world or even trying to be.

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