Seen on July 6, 2015 @ Natitional Arts Festival, Grahamstown
One of the greatest challenges of a cultural event like the National Arts Festival is to make great art available at all levels for a very diverse community. So here we are sitting with grandparents and the apples of their eyes, children with their wellington boots and everything in between in eager expectation to hear the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra reduced to its bare essential for the arrival of Heroes and Villains, a special concert featuring themesongs from well known blockbusters featuring heroes and villains. The next hour is guaranteed to be a fun one as director Richard Cook gives us the most interesting music lesson ever with a lot of humour. Not only does the orchestra plays tunes from Starwars, Dumbbusters, Alladin (enchanting as flying along on Aladdin’s carpet) representatives of the different families (strings, brass, woodwind and percussion) do come out and introduce the single sound of their instrument in a peculiar way. Just as much as every child has music in them, there is a hero in all of them too. Whether it is a fight of life of death at at pirate ship for Pirates of the Caribean or Maria Keary ‘Hero” sung in a way you believe you can do it. Themes from Superman and James Bond all fuel a most rewarding introduction to the orchestra, both in getting to know individual instruments as the collective sound of the orchestra and the voices of Nicholas Nicolaidis and Este Meerkotter. Such concerts are designed to fuel a life long love for music played by some of the country’s most excellent musicians. Definitely a high light of the festival for the whole family.