Cello For Africa

Cello For Africa cover
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Cello For Africa
Heleen du Plessis (cello)

[ Ode Records / CD ]

Release Date: Friday 18 October 2013

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Cello for Africa saw Heleen du Plessis (South African cellist and Williams Evans Executant lecturer for cello at the University of Otago, member of the TriOtago piano trio and principal cellist of the Southern Sinfonia) set out on a journey of commissioning and recording new South African compositions for cello that would reflect the multi-cultural context of the country, capturing in sound the character, soul and unmistakable flavour of South Africa but also to expressing issues relating to identity, sense of belonging, alienation, loss and longing.

"The expression "for Africa" means "a lot of", highlighting the central role of the cello with its ability to voice a huge range of human qualities. It also expresses my wish to give back something to South Africa - the place I call home...

I wanted music that paints in sound the diverse images of my country, or which would take their inspiration from South African narratives, paintings and poetry…I had a preference for relatively tonal music (in a musical "sense" a place of belonging), which is melodic (to sing and cry) and rhythmically characteristic of South Africa (to dance and celebrate). The project provided the long awaited opportunity to extend my scope of reference beyond that of my western musical upbringing and to begin engaging with indigenous African music, played on traditional instruments (such as the mbira, marimba, various percussion instruments and African voice) or rendered in vernacular vocal style." - Heleen du Plessis, from the liner notes.

A Sense of Place for Cello and Marimba by Klatzow and Concerto for an African Cellist by Hans Huyssen were recorded in the Odeion School of Music Hall, University of Free State, Bloemfontein, South Africa. Sonata for Cello and Piano by Klatzow was recorded in the Endler Hall, University of Stellenbosch, South Africa.


Peter Klatzow - A Sense of Place for Cello and Marimba (2012)
1. The Mask
2. Shaka's Victory Dance

Peter Klatzow - Sonata for Cello & Piano (2010)
3. Allegro Moderato
4. Andante Tranquillo
5. Vivace
6. Adagio

Hans Huyssen - Concerto for An African Cellist (2013)
7. Partida
8. Passacamino
9. Mahororo
10. Mapfachapfacha muMhembero