Marching to their own beat

Orchestra Meeting of the German Schools in Southern Africa
Last week, 135 music-loving and talented learners accompanied by their music teachers met at the German International School in Cape Town (Deutsche Schule Kapstadt, DSK) for the biennial Orchestra Meeting of German Schools in Southern Africa.
In addition to the musicians from the German schools in Cape Town, Johannesburg and Pretoria, around 30 learners from the Deutsche Höhere Privatschule Windhoek (DHPS) also took part. Under the direction of Chad Hendricks, conductor of the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra, the young talents rehearsed from 11 to 15 March, concentrating on register, choral and ensemble performances.
They worked closely together, sharing techniques and experiences, and fostered an environment of mutual learning, respect and appreciation.
The highlight was a jam-packed final concert themed “Out of this World” on 15 March 2024, where the 600 guests were swept away by classical masterpieces from Handel and "Carmina Burana", as well as film melodies from "Pirates of the Caribbean" and "Aladdin," and timeless classics like "Adiemus", "Conquest of Paradise", and Leonard Cohen's "Hallelujah".
The young musicians were rewarded with thunderous applause from the enthusiastic audience. Beyond the intense rehearsals and collaborative preparation for the concert, however, the main focus was on the encounter between the schools, serving as a platform for cultural exchange. The supporting programme, including a visit to the Two Oceans Aquarium, a picnic in Green Point Park, and spontaneous attendance at a band slam at the Waterfront, provided an exciting and enriching experience.
"It was wonderful to see learners from the four German schools in southern Africa coming together to make music and deliver an outstanding concert. They had a lot of fun and made new friends during these few days," according to Annika Paulus, music teacher and orchestra director at DHPS.