The OSM Camerata received first place in the 2017 Ictus International Music Competition for bands and orchestras.
Marius Coetzee from the Odeion School of Music at the University of the Free State said: “The award was announced in time for the celebration of the orchestra’s 5th birthday.”
The OSMC was strategically founded in 2012 by Coetzee as the OSM’s flagship chamber ensemble, with the main objective of creating a catalyst for excellence.
Over the past five years, the OSMC has premiered 15 new works by South African composers specially commissioned for them. Highlights remain its participation in the 13th International Conservatory Festival in St Petersburg, Russia, where the ensemble received a standing ovation during a gala concert in the Glazunov Concert Hall, as well as the world première of the Cello Concerto for an African Cellist by South African composer, Hans Huyssen, with South African cellist, Heleen du Plessis as soloist.
The CD was released in 2014 on the New Zealand Classical Music label, Ode Records in Auckland, New Zealand and was one of five CDs nominated for the Listeners’ Choice Award New York in March 2014.
The inaugural year of this annual competition drew applicants from Washington State in the US all the way to Bloemfontein in the Free State. Video submissions were judged and narrowed down to a final round from which prize winners were selected.
The OSM Camerata with conductors, Xavier Cloete and Gerhard De Jager, received first place in the University/Conservatory Orchestra category.
The competition was founded to highlight the work that music educators, conductors, students, performers and community members make in ensembles at the university, community, youth, high school and middle school levels.
Competition director, Alex Serio, says that “many people do not realise the amount of work that it takes to make these ensembles run. What is more is that most of the public does not realise the level of artistic excellence that can be achieved in these ensembles.
Ictus International Music Competition was founded to highlight this level of excellence on an international level with the use of online video submissions that are then shared with the public.”