Wonder pianists grace the city

2019-03-05 06:01
Six young pianist (from left) Carla Roman Vazquez, Lissy Hermelink, Greta Lobefaro, Enrico Noel Czmorek, Qden Blaauw and Bartek Kokot Lissy Hermelink (Germany), Greta Lobefaro (Italy), Bartek Kokot (Poland), Carla Roman (Spain), Enrico Noel Czmorek (Hungary) en Qden Blaauw with minister Anroux Marais PHOTOs: Nomzamo yuku

Six young pianist (from left) Carla Roman Vazquez, Lissy Hermelink, Greta Lobefaro, Enrico Noel Czmorek, Qden Blaauw and Bartek Kokot Lissy Hermelink (Germany), Greta Lobefaro (Italy), Bartek Kokot (Poland), Carla Roman (Spain), Enrico Noel Czmorek (Hungary) en Qden Blaauw with minister Anroux Marais PHOTOs: Nomzamo yuku

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The provincial minister of Cultural Affairs and Sport, Anroux Marais warmly welcomed five young pianists and an international recognised maestro Wolfram Schmitt-Leonardy at the opening of Wonderkinders - a classical musical sensation - at Josephine Mill in Newlands on Wednesday 27 February.

The pianists and locally acclaimed Qden Blaauw participated in three concerts at different venues from Friday 1 March to Monday 4 March. The pianists also took part in six masterclasses from Wednesday 27 February to Monday 4 March.

The concerts and the classes were held in collaboration with Arts Capital and Lang Lang International Music Foundation.

One of the organisers Colin Daries, of Art Capital, says the idea was inspired by the excellence of Blaauw. At the age of 13 Blaauw made a name for himself at the international level.

“After observing Qden’s talent they wanted to give an opportunity to equip, not just him, but the aspiring local pianists who had little to no privileges of attaining advanced lessons. The youth in Cape Town has potential and needs every little bit of support to reach its desired level of performances,” Daries said.

He added that the classes were created to accommodate about 150 interested music students from socially disadvantaged schools. And Marais says the department was honoured to be part of the initiative that seeks talent of young and local musicians.

“It is not often that students get exposure to an international level of performances,” Marais says. He added that he hopes those who participated would walk away with valuable knowledge and inspiration. Yet the department recognise and continues to work with different stakeholders.”

Schmitt-Leonardy says classes and the concerts were designed for a vast group of aspiring pianists, with the aim to instil long lasting impression of what being a pianist means. “Pianists is not just about playing with sounds, but rather making a meaningful sensational music that touches the souls of your audience. In order to do that you should give it all, that means letting every part of your body connect with the flow of the sound.”

Schmitt-Leonardy says this is rare to find among the new generation and he was impressed beyond imagination when he first met Qden and gave him exactly that.

“He is one of a kind, I knew from that moment on I wanted to work with him, but we had challenges making anything to materialise because of the distance and our commitments. When this opportunity presented itself, I knew it is our chance to do something amazing together. He and all the young pianists here (today) have something special, something that needs to be nurtured and taken to higher levels.”

Qden says he was honoured and anxious about the performances. He thanked the organisers for affording him an opportunity to play among other international pianists from the comfort of his home country. One of the pianists, Greta Lobefaro hoped that local youth would be able to learn from them and know that with lots of hard work they would too, reach the international levels.

Lobefaro says: “It takes lot of hard work and dedication, but one should not give up. You need to practise all the time to keep improving and making sure every performance is better than your last.”

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