Capella Amadeus string chamber orchestra returns for 25th anniversary

Ni Nyoman Wira

The Jakarta Post

Jakarta

Jakarta   /  Sat, August 25, 2018  /  08:00 am

Cappella Amadeus, a string chamber orchestra under the Amadeus Indonesia Music Institute, celebrated its 25th anniversary by holding a concert on Thursday evening at Usmar Ismail Hall in Central Jakarta.(Amadeus Indonesia Music Institute/File)

Cappella Amadeus, a string chamber orchestra under the Amadeus Indonesia Music Institute, celebrated its 25th anniversary by holding a concert on Thursday evening at Usmar Ismail Hall in Central Jakarta.

This was the first time the group has performed since declaring a hiatus in 2011 to give other departments in the institute a chance to perform.

Around 25 musicians were on stage that evening, with the youngest one being only 12 years of age. They staged a classical program that included “Divertimento in F Major K. 138” by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, “Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 in G Major” and “BWV 1048” by Johann Sebastian Bach, and “Ancient Airs and Dances” and “Suite No. 3” by Ottorino Respighi.

They played harmoniously that night and received a standing ovation from the audience.

Since the orchestra’s establishment in 1993, members have been selected by Grace Soedargo, founder of the Amadeus Indonesia Music Institute.

“They have to be talented, highly disciplined, smart and committed,” Grace told The Jakarta Post after the concert.

The orchestra has performed hundreds of concerts across Asia and collaborated with international musicians, including Phillip Green from Australia, Christiane Hutcap from Germany and Lee Chong Min from Singapore.

Read also: 'We Got Rhythm' concert raises funds for Indonesian wind musicians

Since the orchestra’s establishment in 1993, members have been selected by Grace Soedargo, founder of the Amadeus Indonesia Music Institute. (Amadeus Indonesia Music Institute/File)

By presenting a classical program, the institute aims to challenge the impression that the genre is reserved for the rich and the elderly.

“Classical music is for everybody, but we have to play it well,” Grace said.

“We previously performed [Antonio] Vivaldi’s songs in front of homeless children and they were all quiet.”

Although the orchestra played Coldplay’s “Viva la Vida” at the end of the show to the audience’s surprise, she emphasized the importance of classical music as a foundation for musicians.

“The more you listen to it [classical music], the more different it sounds. If children learn to play this genre, they can easily tackle all genres,” Grace said.

However, she conceded that it was very difficult to raise awareness about classical music in Indonesia as its people have other preferences.

“[Event organizers] also know that not many Indonesians like classical music, so it’s hard to get sponsors for this type of concert,” said Grace, who is a former member of the Capella Accademica Graz in Austria.

The music institute’s next performance will be on Oct. 27, when it will hold a charity concert to build a school in Papua. Song in its next program will be recorded onto CDs and given to churches. (mut)