David Bester, senior lecturer in violin and viola at Nelson Mandela University, is a performer with a passion for research in string pedagogy. As soloist, he has performed with the Stellenbosch Camerata, the Cape Town-, KwaZulu Natal-, and Gauteng Philharmonic- and Eastern Cape Philharmonic Orchestras and plays regularly as a member of the Chamber Orchestra of Namur and the Amici Quartet. David is the concertmaster for the Eastern Cape Philharmonic Orchestra, and has been guest concertmaster for the Free State Symphony and the Gauteng Philharmonic Orchestras.
After obtaining his BMus (cum laude) and MMus (cum laude) in music performance from Stellenbosch University under Suzanne Martens, David furthered his studies in Belgium. Here, he obtained a second MMus (cum laude) from the Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp under the tutelage of Alissa Margulis.
David was awarded the Nelson Mandela University Faculty of Arts Creative Output Award in 2018 and 2019.
Jan-Hendrik Harley obtained his Bachelors degree in music from the University of Stellenbosch (BMUS) in 2002, specialising in chamber music, classical guitar and viola. He holds a Masters degree in chamber music with a composition portfolio from the University of Stellenbosch, and a Masters degree in viola performance with early music as related field from the University of North Texas. Jan-Hendrik is a composer/arranger of classical and popular music, and also freelance as a performing and recording artist. He has done production work on numerous soundtracks and albums, his main focus being orchestration and scoring.
Mariechen Meyer believes the double bass or any form of bass to be an essential ingredient to music – music being an essential ingredient to life. For that very reason she is an expert in her field and an active promoter of the double bass and music education in general. Ever since she started playing the double bass Mariechen has been fascinated by its role as a solo and chamber instrument. This fascination has led to numerous local and international music experiences such as being member of the Bassinova Quartet (USA)and iPalpiti Artists International (USA), competing in international competitions, attending masterclasses and workshops in the United States and Europe and performing as soloist with the University of North Texas Symphony Orchestra (2013), Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra (2008) and Johannesburg Symphony Orchestra (2004). Mariechen started her studies with Peter Guy in Bloemfontein from the age of 10, followed by undergraduate studies with Roxane Steffen at the University of Stellenbosch and graduate studies with Jeff Bradetich at the University of North Texas. After completing her final doctorate degree in musical arts at UNT with Bradetich, Mariechen moved back to South Africa and is currently working as a freelance performer, private double bass teacher and part-time lecturer at the University of Stellenbosch excited to share her knowledge, to continuously keep learning, do research and help promote the versatility of the double bass, the importance of music education and classical music in our community.
The Eastern Cape Philharmonic Orchestra is a community orchestra comprising local music professionals and amateur musicians, who come from various professional disciplines and occupations. Their repertoire ranges from family-orientated concerts and youth concerto festivals to symphony concerts and Prom concerts with massed choirs. The Orchestra is currently presenting a series of “Covid-19-friendly” Chamber concerts, in Gqeberha’s unique concert venues, highlighting sections of the orchestra.