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Growth spurt for orchestra’s kids’ concerts

Growth spurt for orchestra’s kids’ concerts

March 25, 2008 – The Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra’s popular concerts for pre-schoolers and their families have a new name, a new format and a new presenter this year with the first concerts taking place in Papakura in April.

NZCT APO 4 Kids was formerly known as Baby Proms. The concerts are aimed at pre-schoolers aged two to five-years-old and their families. The concerts are highly interactive and are designed to introduce children to the music and instruments of a symphony orchestra.

NZCT APO 4 Kids concerts are held throughout Auckland, in Papakura, Takapuna and Auckland Central. Tickets are just $15 for adults and $10 for children.

This year’s concerts will be presented by Christchurch-based music educator and musician Celia Stewart. Ms. Stewart takes over from Baby Proms creator Jennifer Moss who has retired.

The concerts will be conducted by Wellington-based Owen Clarke, who was a huge hit with schoolchildren at last year’s Kiwi Kapers and PhilharMania concerts, often having them screaming with laughter. Soloists include APO Principal Trumpet, Mark Fitzpatrick, APO Young Achiever, Celeste Oram on piccolo and young Auckland violinist Duncan Lai. Thirteen-year-old Duncan was engaged as a soloist after impressing the APO’s Education Manager, Lee Farley, at the orchestra’s Lion Foundation Orchestral Summer School in January.

The programme mixes popular classical pieces such as Saint-Saëns’ Carnival of the Animals, Strauss’s Space Odyssey and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Flight of the Bumblebee with children’s songs including a sing-along of Wheels on the Bus. This year’s concerts will also include Kapa Haka performances.

During the one-hour concert children are invited to clap along, conduct the orchestra and also get the opportunity to observe the instruments up close – and in action! – with a walk through the orchestra while it plays on stage.

“For the past 10 years children from all over Auckland have discovered the thrill of orchestral music at these fun, family concerts,” says APO Chief Executive, Barbara Glaser. “NZCT APO 4 Kids are concerts where we encourage the audience to not only make some noise with us but even come on stage when our musicians are playing! They are a pleasure to perform and we look forward to introducing some exciting new features to this year’s concerts.”

The APO 4 Kids concerts are presented with funding from the New Zealand Community Trust.


Saturday 19th April
12.30pm & 2pm
Hawkins Centre, Papakura

Saturday 10th May
12.30pm & 2pm
Bruce Mason Centre, Takapuna

Saturday 17th May
10.30am & 12 noon
Auckland Town Hall, THE EDGE
Presented in partnership with Auckland City and THE EDGE

Tickets to all concerts available from or Ph APO Ticket Office on (09) 623 1052. Adults $15, Child $10.


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