Summertime Feels in the gardens of Overstone Farm

2018-11-28 06:02
PHOTO: supplied

PHOTO: supplied

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MIX up a 155 year-old farm setting, a stone shed, and a dappled expansive garden with the jazzy-blues vocal talent of Tanya Nicolson, accompanied by St John Haw, interspersed with the heart-stopping classical piano talent of concert pianist Lara Kirsten, and you have a Sunday with a Summertime Feel that promises pure magic.

“Summertime Feels”, a lazy afternoon of good music with great company, takes place on Sunday, December 2 from 1pm, with gates opening at 11am, at Overstone Farm, a working family farm 55km from Pietermaritzburg, 15km beyond Wartburg.

Nestled in the sugar belt, Overstone offers a peaceful venue in a number of self-catering accommodation units in the original family homestead.

Haw and Nicolson met in early 2013 through a mutual friend, and found an immediate connection musically. With Haw on piano and Nicolson on vocals, they were matched in an unexpected way through a love of their jazz influences but it was really their emotional connection through the music that came as such a surprise to them both.

Nicolson has been on stage professionally since the age of eight, with a background in drama, musical theatre, cabaret, physical theatre, film and TV. Her theatrical credits include playing the lead in David Kramer’s District Six – The Musical and many more musical theatre, serious dramas, film and TV roles including directing Grease alongside Ian Von Memerty.

In 2007, Nicolson began pursuing a new found passion for the culinary arts and hospitality which culminated in the opening of an award-winning gourmet bistro in 2010 in Hilton; but stumbling upon the innate talents of Haw rekindled the musical fire in her.

Haw is a clinical psychologist in private practice in Pietermaritzburg who has played piano most of his life in a variety of different spheres. Although his talent on the keys comes from somewhere that can only be described as innate and somewhat visceral, Haw is also an extremely skilled landscaper with an unbridled passion for gardens, architecture, and antiques.

Kirsten is an award winning pianist and performance poet based in Curry’s Post in the Midlands.

After completing her high school career at the National School of the Arts in Johannesburg, Kirsten received her BMus and BMus Honours degrees (both cum laude) respectively in 2001 and 2005 at the University of Pretoria. Prof. Joseph Stanford and Dr. Wessel van Wyk were her mentors in solo piano and chamber music respectively.

Kirsten toured for over two years with the improvising cellist Francois le Roux throughout SA, Europe, and the USA, and for the past decade has been active as both a solo and chamber musician. Kirsten has played with musicians such as coloratura soprano Linda van Coppenhagen, soprano Gwyneth Lloyd, tenor Sandile Mabaso, clarinetist Morné van Heerden, and cellist Wessel Beukes.

One of the highlights of her musical career was trekking her piano all the way from her home in the Midlands of KZN to the AfrikaBurn festival (in the Tankwa Karoo of the Northern Cape) where she gave three open-air piano recitals.

Concerts in KwaZulu-Natal include two tours with tenor Sandile Mabaso.

As a special addition to the lazy afternoon of music, a free yoga session will be conducted by Alice Richter on the lawns of the historic gardens at Overstone. Richter teaches alignment based Hatha Vinyasa, and beginner to experienced level practitioners are all welcome.

Tickets for the concert are R100 per person (children under 12 free) and are available through Tanya on 071 353 9539 or Phillippa on 083 290 1153 or at the gate. Bring picnics, drinks, chairs and umbrellas and be prepared for a relaxing, lazy Sunday afternoon.

Directions to the farm can be found on

The venue is approximately 50 minutes from Pietermaritzburg and 1 hour 30 minutes from Durban.

— Supplied.


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