Ever wonder where violinists in Johannesburg hide away? In South Africa, violin players seem to shy away from the stage in a broader context. Such is the novelty when we are graced with a talented string player live in front of us, it begins to beg the question – If the talent is clearly there, who are they, and how can hear a little more of their beautiful music?
The JPO – Where classical violinists converge
The J.P.O. – the Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra is widely regarded as the premier outlet for classical violinists in Johannesburg and further afield. Frankly, good classical music down in this far-flung outpost of the world can be hard to track down! In the year 2000, classical musicians banded together from the ashes of the National Symphony Orchestra to form the JPO, combining talented international local and local soloists. Although beleaguered by scandals, they have resurrected in 2018, restoring credibility and offering world-class performances to the Joburg and the greater public. If you’re interested in attending a concert, the JPO is currently running their World Symphony Series – Summer Season, every Wednesday and Thursday at the Linder Auditorium, in Parktown, Johannesburg.
Celtic and Scottish Traditional Music – grounded in Mzansi
With a global footprint to be reckoned with, the Irish and the Scots are a musical force of note.
Alongside violinists in Johannesburg, we have a couple of fiddlers too. The famous 1984 song from country giants Alabama, “Fiddler in the Band”, seemed to have rung true for Irish musician David Delaney. He has been performing fiddle and flute in a wide assortment of Irish, folk, jazz, African and fusion bands since he arrived in Jozi in 2010 en route to Australia. You can find David performing as a solo wedding violinist or equally comfortable with bands such as Beukes and Delaney, Wiam Otto, and The Cover-Ups.
The Muses – Adding Sass and Flair that Violinists in Johannesburg aren’t normally allowed to
I couldn’t write about violinists in Johannesburg and not leave out The Muses. An electric string quartet that has become one of the most sought-after corporate musical acts in SA. Can they play? Of course! But what sets them far apart from their classical rivals is the vibrant on-stage energy they recreate with every piece of music. There’s clearly a formula working here, and the corporate and high-end wedding market can’t get enough of them! If there’s a new Ed Sheeran, Beyonce or Coldplay single that’s burst onto the scene, you can be guaranteed that the Muses will be performing an equally uplifting version at an event near you. They’re not exactly my cup of tea, but they’re a talented and highly entertaining unit – something aspiring violinists in Johannesburg can sit up and take note of.
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Have you heard a violinist or fiddle player perform somewhere recently that deserves a bit more recognition for their hard graft and talent? I’d love to know more. Like the resurrection of the JPO, musicians and the industry needs to band together to allow the South African entertainment scene to flourish. Happy New Year all.
If you are searching for a violinist for a wedding, party or event, don’t hesitate to get contact me today to book and arrange top-class musical entertainment.