January 19-25: Including Dudley Benson in Japan and Spectrum

by Diana Balham / 10 January, 2013
What will Christchurch's oddest musician make of the <em>Land of the Rising Sun</em>?
Dudley Benson
Dudley Benson in Japan, Saturday


Adventures in Musicland: Dudley Benson in Japan (RNZ National, 1.06pm). What will Christchurch’s oddest musician make of the Land of the Rising Sun – and, perhaps more interestingly, what will the Japanese make of him? This feature follows Benson during a 14-day artist-in-residence stint in Kurashiki, where traditional music and arts are a part of life. After trying to master the koto and the shamisen (stringed instruments) and taiko drumming, he chills out with a little ikebana (flower arranging). What a pretty picture that paints.

Deep Water Diving (RNZ National, 5.12pm). Lynda Chanwai-Earle dives right in. In this final of four programmes, she explores the scary world of competitive free-diving, donning a wetsuit and taking part in a competition to really get to the bottom of things.


Spectrum (RNZ National, 12.15pm). Spectrum and Alwyn Owen have been around almost as long as God. Owen recorded this programme, The Year of the Pestilence, in 1974, when he spoke to 84-year-old Florence Harsant about her adventures as a young acolyte of the Women’s Temperance Movement. In 1913, she rode a horse through the Far North, spreading the word about the evils of drink and bearing witness to the dreadful effects of a smallpox epidemic. Most of the 2000 reported sufferers were Maori, as were the 55 who died, and this broadcast marks the centenary of the epidemic. But Harsant’s model lifestyle didn’t protect her from smallpox; she was eventually struck down, but a tohunga and prayers by a group of Christian Maori women helped her pull through.

The Sunday Feature (RNZ National, 4.06pm). In The Macmillan Brown Lecture 2012, recorded at the University of Canterbury in October, savour the rather terrifying prospect of a discussion on democracy in the South Pacific between Foreign Affairs Minister Murray McCully and the formerly rampant Fiji coup-master Sitiveni Rabuka.


Music Alive (RNZ Concert, 8.00pm). The final concert from last year’s 2012 New Zealand International Piano Festival features celebrated Russian pianists Oleg Stepanov and Natasha Vlassenko. Tonight, they play works by Debussy, Liszt, Ravel and Gavrilin.


Sound Lounge (RNZ Concert, 8.00pm). You can’t get much more contemporary than
Vitamin S: 10 Year Anniversary, a programme marking a decade of nights spent in the pursuit of free improvisation by a group of Auckland-based musicians. Instruments include brass, double bass, piano, taonga puoro, log drums and ukuleles.

Concert music


Bax: Symphony No 1 in E flat, BBC Phil/Vernon Handley; Pleyel: Sinfonia Concertante in B flat for Two Clarinets and Orchestra, Dieter Klöcker, Sandra Arnold (cls), South West German CO/Sebastian Tewinkel

SUNDAY, JANUARY 20, 9.00am:

Holst: Japanese Suite Op 33, Ulster Orch/JoAnn Falletta; Finzi: Cello Concerto in A minor Op 40, Yo-Yo Ma (cello), Royal Phil/Vernon Handley

MONDAY JANUARY 21, 9.00am:

Handel: Water Music Suite No 1 in F, ASMF/Neville Marriner; Mendelssohn: Concerto in D minor for Violin and Piano, Thomas Albertus Irnberger (vln), Edoardo Torbianelli (fpno), Israel CO/Roberto Paternostro; Prokofiev: Peter and the Wolf, Joanna Lumley (narrator), English Northern Philharmonia/Stephen Barlow; Mozart: Piano Sonata No 11 in A K331, Noriko Ogawa (pno); Hindemith: String Quartet No 2 in F minor Op 10, Amar Quartet; Verdi: Il Trovatore, ballet music, Monte Carlo National Opera Orch/Antonio de Almeida


Boismortier: Serenade No 1, or French Symphony No 1, Le Concert Spirituel/Hervé Niquet; Brahms: Piano Trio No 2 in C Op 87, Eskar Trio; Haydn/Hofmann: Flute Concerto in D, Barthold Kuijken (fl ), Tafelmusik/Jeanne Lamon (dir); Mahler: Symphony No 6 in A minor, Tragic, Hamburg Phil/Simone Young


Rodrigo: Concierto Como un Divertimento, Asier Polo (cello), Castile and Leon SO/Max Bragado-Darman; Reinecke: Symphony No 1 in A Op 79, Bern SO/Johannes Moesus


Ravel: Shéhérazade, Overture, Lyon National Orch/Leonard Slatkin; Godard: Piano Concerto No 2, Victor Sangiorgio (pno), Royal Scottish National Orch/Martin Yates; Górecki: Symphony No 3, Symphony of Sorrowful Songs, Dawn Upshaw (sop), London Sinfonietta/David Zinman; Strauss: String Sextet, from Capriccio Op 85, Seattle Symphony/Gerard Schwarz;
Liszt: Reminiscences of Don Giovanni, Julian Reynolds, Peter Lockwood (pno duo); Goldmark: Rustic Wedding Symphony, Utah SO/Maurice Abravanel

FRIDAY JANUARY 25, 9.00am:

Sibelius: Symphony No 1 in E minor Op 39, NZSO/Pietari Inkinen; Granados: Spanish Dances Op 37 Book 4, Douglas Riva (pno); Prokofiev: Violin Concerto No 1 in D Op 19, Arabella Steinbacher (vln), Russian National Orch/Vasily Petrenko; Crusell: Clarinet Quartet No 3 in D Op 7, Osmo Vänskä (cl), Pekka Kauppinen (vln), Anu Airas (vla), Ilkka Pälli (cello); Brahms: Liebeslieder Waltzes Op 52, Norman Mackenzie, John Wustman (pno duet), Robert Shaw Festival Singers/Robert Shaw; Mendelssohn: Symphony No 3 in A minor Op 56, Scottish, Scottish CO/Joseph Swensen
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