Jacaranda Ensemble to return to Oman this February

Oman Tuesday 24/January/2017 15:22 PM
By: Times News Service
Jacaranda Ensemble to return to Oman this February

Gautam Viswanathan, [email protected]

Muscat: Children in Oman will have the opportunity to learn from some of Europe’s finest musicians when the Jacaranda Ensemble return to the Sultanate this February, under the patronage of Dr. Frank-Walter Steinmeier, the German Federal Minister for Foreign Affairs.

The group, which consists of five classical musicians, received critical acclaim when they travelled to Oman around the same time last year, and will be looking to repeat their success this time around as well.

Jacaranda will be conducting a workshop at the British School Muscat on the 5th of February, a day before their concert at the Al Bustan Hotel.

The quintet consists of Sebastian Pietsch, Richard Mosthaf, Thomas Hoffmann, Thomas Ringleb and Matthias Dressler, who are members of the Brandenburg Orchestra in Germany. In addition to playing more conventional instruments such as the saxophone and drums, they also merge niche ones, including the didgeridoo and alpenhorn, into their music, making for a very unique rendition of tunes.

They will also be hosting workshops in collaboration with the Royal Oman Symphony Orchestra and Petroleum Development Oman during their 10-day stay in the country.

“The workshops will be very interesting because Jacaranda are always trying to invent new sounds by combining instruments differently, and these instruments are not often found in Oman,” said Ahmed Abouzahra, the General Manager of Arabesque International, the event management company which will be organising Jacaranda’s stay in Oman.

“They will teach the students how to play instruments and will also show them how to make musical sounds from objects in daily life, so this will be great for them,” he added. “Last year, Jacaranda were very interactive with the audience as well, and given that they have a new programme, this year will be very interesting.”

Abouzahra says Jacaranda is sure to inspire those who wish to take up music as a career.

“I believe it is good to start educating the next generation at a young age,” he said. “Bringing international artists who are very interactive with their audience. They are going to interact with kids and inspire them, because kids are normally more welcome to new ideas.

In addition to the above, Jacaranda will also be playing at a private reception at the home of the German Ambassador to Oman on the 2nd of February.

“Last year’s concert was held at the auditorium of the Ministry of Education,” said Franz Dicken, the Deputy Head of Mission for the German Embassy in Muscat. “I don’t know how many seats are there, but all of them were taken. The concert was really good and the people really loved it."

“They also performed for the guests at the residence of the German Ambassador in Shatti, and you don’t often see it at a reception, but the people were dancing,” added Dicken. “They have very unusual musical instruments and they put them together in a way I have never seen or heard anywhere before. It is a very special thing that they do.

Dicken was also looking forward to seeing the musicians interacting with the students in Oman.

“Last year, the pupils liked the workshop so much, because these five musicians are professionals and they know how to entertain them and get students interested in what they do,” he told Times of Oman.