Houstoun plays The Egyptian for the final time


Please Note: The Houston plays ‘The Egyptian’ concert has been postponed. It will now take place on Sunday September 6, 5pm at the Vodafone Events Centre instead of this weekend. 

After almost 50 years of playing, New Zealand’s foremost pianist Michael Houstoun will be performing in South Auckland for the final time on Saturday March 21 with the Manukau Symphony Orchestra (MSO) before retirement.

Performing Saint-Saëns’ Piano Concerto No. 5, nicknamed The Egyptian’, Houstoun says he loves the charm, exoticism and virtuosity of the work.

Since first performing with the MSO in 2005 at the opening of what is now the Vodafone Events Centre, this will be the sixth time Houstoun performs with the MSO. “Michael is our most-loved soloist,” says Uwe Grodd, MSO’s musical director.

“He is a charismatic performer and we are humbled to be on this rewarding journey and sharing the stage with him.”

Michael Houstoun will be performing for the final time on Saturday March 21 with the Manukau Symphony Orchestra. Photo supplied

Houstoun says he loves the MSO and that he and the MSO have a great history together.

“The MSO plays a terrific role in greater Auckland’s musical life and I wish that will continue,” says Houstoun.

In celebrating the 250th anniversary of Beethoven’s birth, the MSO has programmed one of his overtures in each of the concerts this year, starting with his Name Day Celebration Overture.

Mozart’s Symphony No 40 in G minor has one of the most recognisable tunes of any symphony.

This intensely passionate work was said to have influenced composers such as Beethoven.

Extolling the charms of Paris, Offenbach’s La Vie Parisienne Overture is a lively celebration of everything Parisian with catchy tunes reminiscent of the can-can music heard in cabarets.

The Manukau Symphony Orchestra is a community orchestra with a ‘very special spirit’ comprised of a unique mix of professional, youth and community players. It is the only full symphony orchestra based in South Auckland and performs up to five concerts throughout the year.

When: Saturday March 21, 7.30pm

Where: Vodafone Events Centre


The Times has two double passes to give away to the concert on March 21. To win please log on to www.times.co.nz/competitions