The combining of students and teachers to form a small chamber orchestra is commonplace in the musical capitals of the world and this initiative is not only designed to enhance the student music making experience within a professional environment, but also to create a vibrant musical vehicle for the enjoyment of performers and audience alike.
The Stellenbosch University Camerata gave their first concert in September 2008 with Daniel Rowland performing the ever-popular Eight Seasons – Vivaldi’s well-known and much loved Four Seasons coupled with those by Tango legend, Astor Piazzolla. The long-standing relationship between Daniel Rowland and the Stellenbosch International Chamber Music Festival led to a CD recording of these works a month later. This CD was released by TwoPianists Records and won the 2010 SAMA award for the best “Popular Classical Album”. The Camerata has since given numerous concerts in the Endler Hall, Stellenbosch, not least of all in collaboration with internationally acclaimed violinist, Benjamin Schmid, cellist Peter Martens and pianist Luis Magalhães in the first South African performance of the Beethoven Triple concerto in chamber setting without conductor. Subsequent projects include the release of a disc of early Mendelssohn repertoire featuring Luis Magalhães (piano) and Zoë Beyers (violin) as soloists, as well various concerts in Stellenbosch, Cape Town and along the Garden Route.
The US Camerata now has a number of film score recordings to its credit, notably the award winning Afrikaans feature film, “Die Wonderwerker” and the international success, “Khumba”.
Notable soloists have included violin superstar Joshua Bell and the legendary Pinchas Zukerman.