Summer Season 2019 

 JPO’s 2019 education concerts start this week

The Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO) will open its 2019 Education Concert series with a performance conducted by Eddie Clayton to be given at Rebongwe Primary School on Friday 18 January, starting at 09h00.  


Mr Bongani Tembe, the Chief Executive and Artistic Director of JPO, said: “The value of integrating music into the educational curricula of learners cannot be exaggerated. In this regard, the JPO is proud to be able to play a role in introducing music into the lives of tomorrow’s leaders.”

“Music is the world’s universal language. It connects people with each other from all walks of life across the globe,” Mr Tembe said. “Music not only promotes a spirit of harmony and understanding among disparate communities, it also instils a sense of commitment and purpose in young people, enabling them to experience the joy of mastering the art of making music together, while also learning to appreciate the many levels through which it enlivens imagination and creative powers, qualities which enhance decision-making and so help to create society’s leaders of the future.”   

“So it is of prime importance to the JPO that we continue to prioritize our Education and Development initiative, in taking our message to schools, thus ensuring that we invest in the future generations of musicians who will continue to carry the torch we so proudly bear today. In this light we are delighted to align ourselves this week with the Vuyani Dance Theatre, in presenting a renowned music educational work such as Sergei Prokofiev’s classic, Peter and The Wolf , as a means of introducing the various instruments of a symphony orchestra to young people through the medium of narrative.”  

A symphonic fairy tale for children, Peter and The Wolf  was written by the great Russian composer in 1936. The narrator tells a children's story, while the orchestra illustrates it. It is Prokofiev's most frequently performed work, and one of the most popular works in the classical repertoire. Each character in the story has a particular instrument and musical theme, making it easy for children to recognise the distinctive sound of each instrument in the orchestra.

The JPO has won wide appreciation for presenting its educational concerts, using carefully chosen, accessible repertoire to make the learning experience all the more enjoyable for its young audience members.

Admission to JPO’s Education concerts is free and open to members of the community.

Following Friday’s opening concert, further JPO music education concerts will be given on 25 January, and on 1, 8 and 15 February 2019. Watch press for further details.

For further information call 011- 484 0446 or email

Spring Season 2018  


 24 October to 17 November 2018

The Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO) is pleased to announce details of its 2018 Spring Season. The Spring Season is set to take place at the Linder Auditorium in Parktown, at Wits University from 24 October to 17 November 2018. 

The season continues to uphold the proud tradition of the renowned World Symphony Series (WSS) launched in Durban 22 years ago and introduced to JPO audiences late last year. Continuing to attract an array of artistic audiences, the season is set to continue delivering a world class symphony concerts experience.

With one of four programmes, starting at 20:00, audiences can expect performances to take place on every Wednesday and Thursday throughout the season. The Wednesday performances will be repeated the following evening, and a third performance of the last programme will be repeated on 17 Saturday November.

“As late Spring heralds the approach of Summer, we are proud to bring our greatly valued family of music lovers together again, for a rich mix of live music making. This is geared to appeal to audiences of all ages,” says JPO Artistic Director and Chief Executive, Mr Bongani Tembe. “We are delighted to welcome all our music lovers and our new family members back to the Linder Auditorium for our carefully curated programmes, the first of which will see the JPO teaming up with the KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic Orchestra.”

American maestro, William Eddins, Music Director Emeritus of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, and a frequent guest conductor of major orchestras throughout the world, launches the season with an eclectic programme representative of four countries.

Camille Saint-Saëns’s tumultuous Bacchanale from his biblical operatic epic, Samson et Delilah, provides a high-energy Francophile concert lift off. Violinist, Rachel Lee Priday, one of today’s new-generation classical stars whom is acclaimed for her beauty of tone and riveting stage presence, will transport the audience into the heart of the evening’s programme with an excursion into the upper reaches of late 19th century German Romanticism, found in Brahms’s magnificent Violin Concerto in D Major.

During the second half of the evening, audiences will experience the JPO paying homage to one of South Africa’s greatly loved matriarchs, Mama Albertina Sisulu, with a performance of Bongani Ndodana-Breen’s Ma Sisulu Sinfonia. The centenary of Mama Albertina Sisulu’s birth takes place this year.  The evening is set to close with another centennial salute, to Leonard Bernstein (1918 – 1990), as the Johannesburg and KwaZulu-Natal Philharmonic players sign off on a spectacular note, performing the great American composer’s Symphonic Dances from his smash hit Broadway musical, Westside Story.

German conductor Justus Frantz takes the JPO podium for the second programme of the season, on 31st October and 1st November. Maestro Frantz opens with one of Liszt’s most dazzling orchestral compositions, his Symphonic Poem No 4 ‘Les Preludes’. Following this high-octane piece is a difficult act to cap, but the challenge is one which highly accomplished young South African cello soloist, Aristide du Plessis, Associate Principal Cello of the KZN Philharmonic, will apply his considerable skills to the bravura challenges of Camille Saint-Saëns’s Cello Concerto No I in A minor. The evening climaxes with a performance of one of the concert circuit’s best-loved staples, Antonin Dvorak’s Symphony No.9 in e minor, Op.95 “From the New World”.

Japanese master conductor, Yasuo Shinozaki, is at the helm of the JPO for its third programme of the season on 7th and 8th November. Following a performance of Mendelssohn’s enchanting but rarely heard Fair Melusina Overture, the South African-born virtuoso, Robert Pickup, Principal Clarinettist of the Philharmonia Zurich Orchestra, takes the spotlight in one of the repertoire’s most thrilling showpieces – Carl Maria von Weber’s Clarinet Concerto No 1 in F minor. Beethoven’s towering Eroica Symphony brings the evening to a rousing close.

The Israeli-American conductor, Daniel Boico, makes a dynamic return to the JPO’s podium to round off the season on 14, 15 and 17 November. Following another Liszt concert dazzler as a curtain raiser, the Hungarian Rhapsody No.2 in C minor, the acclaimed German-Russian pianist, Olga Scheps, an exclusive Sony Classical recording artist, is set to take the Linder by storm with her account of one of the international concert-going public’s best loved war-horses, Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No 2 in C minor. Bringing the house down on a sublime note, Elgar’s iconic Enigma Variations is a work always guaranteed to send concert-goers home on an exultant note.

Season tickets for the Johannesburg Philharmonic’s World Symphony Series 2018 Spring Season are available through Computicket. Call 0861 915 8000 or book online at 

-Published 9 October 2018