Elena Kerimova

Latoya Newman

FOR Pietermaritzburg clarinetist Kirsten Sayers, making her debut as a soloist with the KZN Philharmonic Orchestra on home ground this weekend is a great achievement.

“Opportunities like this for orchestral players don’t come along that often,” she explains.

Sayers will be among seven soloists who’ll perform at the Symphony in the City concert in the Pietermaritzburg City Hall.

She credits hard work for her success: “It’s very hard work. It is not about luck or talent, it’s really just hard work and perseverance.”

Sayers, who studied at Wykeham Collegiate, will be playing the Solo de Concours by Andre Messager.

“It’s particularly nice to be playing in Pietermaritzburg... because of the connection between me and the audience and the connection I have with the hall too,” she said.

The annual event is set to take place on Thursday, beginning at 7.30pm, under the baton of resident conductor Naum Rousine.

In a statement, artistic director Christopher Duigan said since the origins of instrumental music, the element of skill, the overt show of ability, has played an important part in generating the excitement of a live concert.

“When amalgamated with a symphony orchestra, as a supporting or opposing musical energy, this skill is driven to a whole new level. Our concert features a variety of solo instruments in a riveting selection of music,” he said.

Another Pietermaritzburger, Nigel Fish, is cello soloist. He will play Fauré’s haunting Elegy.

Other soloists on the bill include Russian violinist Elena Kerimova, guitarist James Grace and musicians Magrit Deppe and Nidhi Gangan. Duigan will end the programme with Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto no 2.

Tickets are available from Parklane Superspar on 033 342 3487 for R100 to R160, with discounts for pensioners, pupils and students.