Auckland Town Hall:
Orchestral music has been in the news this week after RNZ announced plans to shift its (obviously) much-loved Concert from FM to AM and provoked a cacophony of complaint. The feedback shows just how beloved classical and jazz are in this country as well as how vibrant these genres are. Even with the 18 – 35s. Tonight, the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra bursts back into action with a rousing Russian tribute which includes seven minutes of Shostakovich's Festive Overture, the archetypal Romantic piano concerto (Tchaikovsky's Piano Concerto No. 1) and Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition, arranged by Ravel who took the Russian composer's musical tour of an art gallery, originally written for the piano, and refashioned it into an orchestral showstopper.
Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra, Colours of Russia: Auckland Town Hall, Great Hall, tonight.
Completely different tunes ring out from the Town Hall on Saturday when The Stranglers touch down. Formed in 1974 in Guildford, England, The Stranglers have, in 40 years, racked up 24 top 40 singles and 18 top 40 albums including Golden Brown, No More Heroes and Skin Deep. They're touring with Mi-Sex – the NZ new wave rock band behind hits like People, Computer Games, Blue Day and But You Don't Care. Reformed and reimagined to celebrate the 40th anniversary of 1979's Graffiti Crimes, Mi-Sex joins The Stranglers for this show.
The Stranglers + Mi-Sex: Auckland Town Hall, Great Hall, Saturday.
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She's known as the Empress of Soul and she's in Auckland tonight. Seven-time Grammy Award winner Gladys Knight has been in the business for more than 50 years, winning numerous awards and writing and performing pop, gospel, R n B and even a James Bond theme song. She'll deliver her greatest hits in an evening which has been described as "uplifting anthems laden with poignant nostalgia".
Gladys Knight: The Civic, tonight.
Little known fact – New Zealand has more acapella singers per capita than anywhere else in the world and many of them may well be at Pentatonix this weekend. The five-piece vocal troupe have won three Grammys, have a clutch of multi-platinum selling albums and 17 million views on YouTube thanks to their powerful and engaging instrument-free performances of originals and cover songs. Their influences include pop, electronic, hip hop, country, classical and even dubstep.
Pentatonix - The World Tour: Spark Arena, Saturday.
Mt Smart Stadium:
Is this really goodbye? Elton John reckons so and has (since September, 2018) been farewelling his legions of fans around the world with a tour that's touted as a "stunning tribute to a great artist's career." Now it's Auckland's turn to bask in the sunlight glow of a musician whose 50-year collaboration with lyricist Bernie Taupin has delivered hits like Bennie and the Jets, Rocket Man, Tiny Dancer, Crocodile Rock and Candle in the Wind. There's just three nights to catch Elton in Auckland before he farewells performing in New Zealand. Forever, he says.
Elton John, Farewell Yellow Brick Road: Mt Smart Stadium, Sunday, February 16 + Tuesday, February 18 and Thursday, February 20.