Prof Francis Petersen

Rector and Vice-Chancellor, University of the Free State

Dr Debasish Mridha’s words, “music can heal the wounds that medicine cannot touch”, have never been so true as at this moment in our lives. Therefore, it is only fitting that we present music concerts as some of our first face-to-face events after almost two years of social distancing.

I look forward to the day that we can fill our theatres on campus without reservation. As a global society, we have a lot of healing to do, and it is such a privilege that the University of the Free State (UFS) can participate in this process by showcasing quality productions.

We are also thrilled to host you in our recently revamped Odeion Theatre building. Most of the renovations happened while access to our Bloemfontein Campus was restricted, so very few people, for instance, had the opportunity to appreciate the new foyer with its reception area. The sound studio has also undergone an overhaul, and we look forward to the way it will enhance our teaching and learning in the Odeion School of Music.

The Odeion School of Music is a prized jewel in our crown. Since my arrival at the UFS, one of my goals has been to enable our staff, students, and the Bloemfontein community to experience the immense musical talent we have to offer. The UFS will continue to create platforms for our music talent to impact audiences. We care about art, and we care about you.

Welcome to our second Vrystaat Classical Sounds. May you find more than just enjoyment – may you be moved by the experience.

Corneli van den Berg

Vrystaat Kunstefees Feesdirekteur

Dit is báie opwindend dat die Vrystaat Kunstefees vanjaar vir die tweede jaar ‘n mini klassieke musiekfees, Vrystaat Klank en Klassik (VKK), kan aanbied, spesifiek geskoei op klassieke musiekliefhebbers. Wat dit selfs meer opwindend maak is dat hierdie musiekfees in persoon aangebied word!

Hierdie nuwe inisiatief, deur die Vrystaat Kunstefees van stapel gestuur, beoog om klassieke musiek en klankkuns in die provinsie te bevorder en bied aan klassieke musiekliefhebbers ’n geleentheid om hulself te verdiep in ’n klassieke musiekprogram van die hoogste gehalte.

Baie dankie aan die Rupert Musiekstigting vir jul ruimhartige ondersteuning van hierdie inisiatief! Aan die samestellers van die program, Elretha Britz en Hilletje Moller-Bashew, welgedaan! Die program beloof om prikkelend, verkwikkend, en bowenal inspirerend te wees.

Die program bestaan uit ’n hoofprogram asook gratis konserte wat deur topstudente van die Odeion Musiekskool aangebied word. Die hoofprogram, aangebied in die Odeionteater op die kampus van die Universiteit van die Vrystaat, skop af met Cuentos de Hadas, liedere deur Spaanse komponiste, met Linelle Wimbles (sopraan), Aukse Trinkunas (mezzosopraan) en Paul Ferreira en Eugène Joubert (klavier).

Teresa de Wit (mezzosopraan) en Lesley-Ann Mathews (klavier) bied Brahms, Dvorak, Benjamin Britten en Satie in ’n uitvoering genaamd Most beautiful songs. Daarteenoor is Madame Pylinska en die geheim van Chopin ’n toneelstuk met musiek. Naòmi Morgan vertaal Éric-Emmanuel Schmitt se outobiografiese verhaal in Afrikaans. Chris van Niekerk is die verteller en Eugène Joubert die pianis wat onder meer werke van Chopin uitvoer.

Nina Schumann gee ‘n solo-klavieruitvoering met werke van Bach, Mendelssohn, Medtner en Rachmaninoff en die Charl du Plessis Trio speel in It Takes Three oorspronklike tango’s en verwerkings deur Du Plessis self. Die program sluit af in die Geloofsentrum, Universitas met ’n uitvoering van Vivaldi se Gloria met Anmari van der Westhuizen as dirigent.

Ons sien uit daarna om alle klassieke musiek geesdriftiges by Vrystaat Klank en Klassik te verwelkom!

De Villiers Brink

Die nuwe diamant in die kroon van die Vrystaat Kunstefees skitter nog pragtig, meer as ooit!

Vrystaat Klank en Klassik wat verlede jaar vanweë die pandemie  aanlyn was is hierdie jaar weer lewendig soos van ouds. En wees verseker daar is geen afname in die gehalte en entoesiasme van die musici nie, inteendeel, dit word na nuwe hoogtes gevoer.

Die Bloemfonteinse musiek publiek sal met aangename herinneringe  terugdink aan die inisiatiewe aangevoer deur die Odeion Musik Fest onder leiding van die bekende violis Dere Ochse. Vrystaat Klank en Klassik onder die bekwame leiding van Elretha Brits is ‘n voortsetting van hierdie musiek tradisie, welliswaar met ‘n ander baadjie aan.

Vrystaat Klank en Klassik word in die  Odeion uitgevoer van Donderdag 11 November tot Saterdag 13 November 2021 met ‘n gratis konsert op Sondag 14 November 2021. Dit bestaan uit elf konserte waarvan vyf herhalings is om meer musiekliefhebbers geleentheid gee om dit by te woon weens Covid protokolle. Meer detail is in die program hierby.

Die repertoire is sodanig saamgestel dat die kunsmusiek-uitvoerings by ‘n breë spektrum van die kunsgehoor in Bloemfontein byval behoort te vind met aantreklike pakket toegangfooie.

Die VSKK bly ‘n welkome toevoeging tot Bloenfontein se klassiekemusiekkalender asook tot die Vrystaat Kunstefees se omvangryke program.

Jan Beukes

Artistic and Operational Head: OSM

Why a festival such as Vrystaat Klank & Klassik? A legitimate question with a simple answer.  Regarding the possibility of a classical music festival it was clear that we want to present something special to South Africa, the Free State and Bloemfontein. While we are at present constantly confronted with bad news, vital questions, isolation, social distancing, and a great sense of loss,  a week of excellent music is probably a means to help us see the world in a different light. Not only does music reflect on social issues, but it also has tremendous healing power. Mridha once said: “Music can heal wounds which medicine cannot touch.”

The Odeion School of Music (OSM) has been part of Bloemfontein’s concert life for many years, and to be part of this venture is truly an honor. We have the privilege of showing off the extraordinary talent of the cream of OSM students and some of our acclaimed OSM staff members. Other South African artists are also taking part.

The audience is the essence of any music production, without which music performances would not exist. For the first time in more than a year, an audience is allowed back in the Odeion Auditorium. We can experience the superb acoustics of the Odeion as well as live music. We honour the artists as well as the community for investing in art music. We also present free concerts in the Universitas Centre of Faith, to include as many people possible in the current financial environment. When musicians and the audience come together, the result is magical. We believe the experience will fill listeners’ hearts with joy.

A quote by Gould is the message we as musicians wish to convey: “When a community comes together to share cultural life, through celebration, rites and intercultural dialogue, it enhances its relationships, partnerships and networks – in other words, developing social capital”.

Please enjoy this festival of classical music.