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A Week of Inspiration

The 24th Adam Summer School for young chamber musicians took place earlier this month in Nelson and offered 30 of the country’s top young musicians the opportunity to work alongside pianist Stephen De Pledge and the members of the NZSQ on some of the great works of the chamber repertoire. Violist Caroline Norman has attended the school three times so far and can’t seem to get enough of it! You can read her reflections on the school below, as well as a couple of heart-warming emails we received from audience members who were completely blown away by the Adam Summer School finale concerts…

Violist Caroline Norman reflects on the 2018 Adam Summer School

Many positive memories leap to mind when I think of my experiences at the Adam Summer School. There is no single factor to thank for such a successful and rewarding week of music making. Rather, it is a combination of many factors, including the welcoming location of sunny Nelson, the incredible chamber music works cleverly matched to the students’ abilities, the opportunity to work with new people and bring to life such magnificent music, the undying enthusiasm and inspirational words provided by the tutors, the homely environment of the backpackers, and the out-of-this world chocolate pudding (I could write a whole article of praise on that alone). Together they make an unforgettably inspiring and rewarding musical experience, and one which I feel privileged to have had the opportunity to be a part of. The week of inspiration contains daily tutorials and master-classes, individual lessons, self-run rehearsals, and if all of this sounds like too much, then you have the chance to wind down with some thoroughly relaxing Feldenkrais lessons, which may well be followed by the best sleep of your life. Although the week can be tiring and does contain a lot of hard work, it comes with great rewards, not the least of these being a day off, allowing you to go swimming at the beach, wander through town, hike amidst nature, or do whatever one might desire in sunny Nelson. After a week of tough but productive rehearsing and preparation, all students get to both perform and cheer on their fellow peers in the two final concerts of the week, in an environment that never ceases to amaze me with the amount of encouragement and support shown by all involved. These two concerts followed by the after-party function are a perfect way to wrap up a wonderful week! I believe that every student who attends this course feels encouraged and inspired and always comes away from the week with something special and something to move forward with. This truly is a remarkable course, and I am already looking forward to the next one!

Eye opening and inspirational

We were thrilled to receive some wonderful feedback from audiences at the recent summer school, including this email from a local Nelsonian attending a chamber music concert for the first time...

“I was invited by a friend to attend the Finale Concert at Old St John’s in Nelson. I had never listened to chamber music before, and I was absolutely blown away. The hours spent being transported to another space in my mind had to be one of the most educational, eye-opening, inspirational, and surprising ones of my life. It was brilliant! Thank you to all the excellent tutors, school manager, staff, teams of volunteers, and to the young and very talented students.” - Bernadette Zadeh, Nelson

And a couple from the USA took the opportunity to combine a stint of volunteer work for Habitat for Humanity with attending the masterclasses and concerts at the Adam Summer School...

“Last July, my wife and I had a wonderful exposure to the NZSQ during a week of concerts at the Festival of the Sound in Parry Sound, Ontario, Canada. We were taken by their enthusiasm for communicating through music and collaborating with other musicians in a variety of ways. During the Festival, they invited those listening to come to Nelson in February for the Adam Summer School to witness the investment in the lives of 30 young classical musicians. I am very glad I took their invitation seriously. The master classes were a window into how music can be interpreted and shaped as the musicians work together, and the two closing concerts were a stunning display of the results of an intense week of practice, tutoring, work and focus on what the composers present in the music. Very encouraging for the future of good musicianship… So thanks for the invitation, the warm weather (during our snowy winter times in Michigan) and for your investment in the lives of others.” - Dave Tirsell, Michigan 

Thanks to all supporters

We're enormously grateful to all who supported the 2018 Adam Summer School, especially the Adam FoundationCreative NZPub CharityPelorus TrustCloudy BayChamber Music New ZealandNelson Centre of Musical Arts and all our generous scholarship donors.

Read a review of one of the two Finale Concerts from 18 February 2018.  

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