The Austrian government has chosen Shillong as one of the venues to commemorate the 60th anniversary diplomatic relations between Austria and India.
The occasion would be marked with a joint concert by a Austria’s leading orchestra - Vienna Chamber Orchestra from Austria and India’s own orchestra Shillong Chamber Choir conducted by Neil Nongkynrih Vienna Chamber Orchestra.
Both the Orchestra would take the centre stage on March 11 at Sri Aurobindo Institute of Indian Culture, here.
Founded in 1946, the Vienna Chamber Orchestra is Vienna's leading chamber ensemble and over the years has attained recognition as one of the finest chamber orchestras in the world.
With Heinrich Schiff as Principal Conductor and Japanese-born Joji Hattori as Associate Conductor, the orchestra continues its tradition for collaboration with artists in the dual role of conductor and soloist such as Lord Menuhin, Heinz Holliger and its lifetime honorary conductor Philippe Entremont.
Hattori's opera debut at the Vienna Kammeroper with Mozart’s La Finta Giardiniera was praised unanimously by all major newspapers in Vienna and following a Japan premiere of Leoncavallo’s Zaza at the New National Theatre in Tokyo, he was re-invited to conduct Mozart’s Magic Flute in January 2006, inaugurating the Mozart Anniversary at Japan’s first opera house. Currently, Hattori is one of the leading violinists in the world.
“We have chosen Shillong as one of cities for the celebrations because we felt in love with the Shillong Chamber Choir which had performed in Delhi and we wanted our own orchestra to perform tighter in this beautiful city of Shillong,” said Christian Buchmann, one of orchestra member.
The diplomatic relations between the two nations got started in November 1949, when Austria set up a diplomatic mission in India. The bilateral relationship further strengthen after Pandit Nehru openly endorsed the Austrian position that all occupational forces should withdraw from Austria, which India definitely won a very special place in the heart of Austrians.
The Shillong Chamber Choir conducted by Neil Nongkynrih has also won hearts in Switzerland, London, Geneva, Poland and elsewhere in India.
Neil’s first public performance in the UK was in the presence of British Royalty and this led to further recitals in Europe. He has also produced a highly successful series of concerts in Oxford, which included performances by the Oscar Award winning actress Vanessa Redgrave, the British pianist Joanna Macgregor and the American clarinetist Gervase De Peyer. He has played with various orchestras including fundraising concerts including with the London Concertante.
“It’s an honour for us to perform together with the Vienna Chamber Orchestra one of the leading chamber ensemble in the world. This is the first time that an Orchestra will be performing in Shillong and we would surely surprise them with our local talents,” Neil said.