DYNAMIC orchestra conductor Richard Cock will be presenting two exciting events in Nelson Mandela Bay next week, in collaboration with the Eastern Cape Philharmonic Orchestra.
Maestro Cock will present a fundraising concert for St Francis Hospice, Lloyd Webber and Friends, at the Opera House on Sunday October 21.
First performed at last year's National Arts Festival, its sold-out run has been repeated at centres around the country.
Lloyd Webber and Friends features such favourites as Love Changes Everything, Music of the Night, Memory and All I Ask of You, as well as a host of other famous and popular works by Fucik, Donizetti and Piaf among others.
The concert features members of the Eastern Cape Philharmonic, together with soloists Veramarie Meyer and Nicholas Nicolaidis.
Versatile mezzo soprano Meyer's performances range from opera and oratorio to musicals and solo appearances in Richard Cock's Starlight Classics.
Nicolaidis began his musical career in the Drakensberg Boys' Choir, and furthered his vocal training in London after winning the Samro International Overseas Scholarship.
Like Meyer, his repertoire covers a wide range of musical genres through oratorio, chamber music, opera and jazz.
Lloyd Webber and Friends will have one performance only, at 3pm. Booking is through Computicket. Earlier in the week, next Thursday morning, Cock will be in the city when young Grade 2 and 3 pupils from schools around the city will be introduced to instruments of the orchestra in a programme entitled Sounds like Fun!
The ECPO's Music Investment Project will be holding an open day at the Feather Market Centre, which will bring together youngsters with an interest in music.
Director of the project, Judy Speyers explains: "We currently teach music and singing to over 500 pupils in Motherwell and the northern areas of the city.
"Grade 2 and 3 is the time when the youngsters start thinking about which instrument they would like to play; and the open day is a way of engaging with these potential musicians and letting them understand the skills needed to play different instruments."
Members of the ECPO will perform on individual instruments as well as together in the programme conducted by Cock.
"There is no one like Cock to bring a sense of fun and excitement to the art of making music," Speyers says.
The pupils will also have a chance to try out various instruments after the presentation, and follow the different stages of violin-making with Johannesburg-based violin expert, Svend Christensen.
Interested parties can contact Judy Speyers on (041) 581-7747 for more information.