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International Elegance in Chamber Music NZ's 2016 season

MEDIA RELEASE: For Immediate Release

International Elegance in Chamber Music New Zealand's 2016 season

Jazz, early music and special collaborations with international musicians feature in Chamber Music New Zealand’s 2016 Kaleidoscopes Concert Season.

Sub-titled ‘International Elegance’, the full programme for the 2016 was announced this week and features seven concert tours to 12 centres around New Zealand.

CMNZ chief executive Peter Walls said the 2016 season will be “classy, varied, deeply satisfying and fun”. With highlights including New York jazz artist Uri Caine, period-instrument ensemble Les Talens Lyriques, the riches of Mozart and Brahms string quintets in a mini-festival, visiting guest artists Julian Bliss and James Dunham, and the virtuoso London Conchord Ensemble.

The season opens in March with Grammy-nominated New York jazz pianist Uri Caine touring to 10 centres performing with the New Zealand String Quartet in Auckland, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin; while Napier, New Plymouth, Palmerston North, Nelson, Queenstown and Invercargill.

“Whether it’s Mahler, Bach, Beethoven or the Beatles, Uri illuminates the music that he uses as the basis for improvisation in fascinating and entertaining ways. Underpinning it all, is a sense of respect for great music." Peter said.

The Auckland concert on Friday 18 March is part of Auckland Arts Festival, while the Wellington concert on Sunday 20 March is part of the New Zealand Festival.

In April Les Talens Lyriques brings L’Esprit Francais to New Zealand for five concerts in Auckland, Hamilton, Wellington, Christchurch and Dunedin. This stunning early music quartet is led by Christophe Rousset, one of the greatest harpsichordists alive. He is joined in Les Talens Lyriques by two outstanding Baroque violinists and Atsushi Sakai on viola da gamba.

The programme they are performing in New Zealand features Baroque music chart-toppers Couperin’sThe Apotheosis of Corelli and Rameau’s Pièces de Clavecin en Concert.

America’s Ensō String Quartet returns to New Zealand to tour in May, performing concerts in 10 centres with a programmes featuring Beethoven, Ravel, Haydn and Sibelius along with new miniatures by young Auckland composer Alex Taylor.

Australian violinist Suyeon Kang won the 2015 Michael Hill International Violin Competition and is joined by pianist Stephen de Pledge to tour to 11 centres performing a programme that explores the richness of the violin/piano duo repertoire.

Clarinet superstar Julian Bliss joins the NZTrio in July and August for a tour featuring one of the greatest chamber music works of the 20th century, Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time, as well as a new Ross Harris work There May Be Light.

A special project features in September when American violist James Dunham joins the New Zealand String Quartet for QuintEssence – the Mozart and Brahms Experience.

“When we heard the New Zealand String Quartet were being joined by James to record the complete Brahms String quintets, we asked them to add two of the great Mozart quintets and create this special experience,” Peter said.

“Then we approached the talented young musicians of the Pettman Players and suggested they learn two of the remaining Mozart quintets to complete the experience.”

The full day-long QuintEssence mini-festival will be performed in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch and includes three concerts and a seminar ‘Five on a Musical Adventure’ in which Frances Moore will explore the connections between Brahms and Mozart.

The New Zealand String Quartet and James Dunham will also perform in Napier, New Plymouth, Nelson and Dunedin in a concert featuring a Brahms and Mozart quintet and a newly commissioned work from young composer Salina Fisher.

Closing the 2016 season will be the London Conchord Ensemble – an octet of flute, oboe, bassoon, clarinet, horn, piano, violin and cello opening up a treasure trove of chamber music. The full octet performs in four cities, before splitting into two quartets for the remaining six centres.

London Conchord will also present family and ‘baby-friendly’ concerts in Auckland, Wellington and Dunedin. “We know babies, pre-schoolers and young children really respond to classical music and so we’ve programmed concerts for the youngest members of the family.” The Dunedin concerts are part of Arts Festival Dunedin.

New ticketing options have been introduced for 2016 to make it easier for people of all ages to access Chamber Music New Zealand concerts including special prices for under 35-year-olds, discounts for senior citizens and a ‘Babysitting Club’ providing a free second ticket for those who book a ticket and can show they’ve also booked a babysitter for the concert.

Subscriber tickets are now on sale for the Chamber Music New Zealand Kaleidoscopes 2016: International Elegance Concert Season. Concert tickets for Uri Caine go on public sale on Monday 23 November and all concert tickets are on public sale from Monday 1 February 2016. For full details of the season and ticketing options for 2016 visit

Chamber Music New Zealand acknowledges major funding from Creative New Zealand.

High resolution images and the full programme brochure are available for download here

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