Violinist pulls the right strings

Hout Bay violinist, Michael Duffett. Picture: Supplied

Hout Bay’s Michael Duffett will be returning to home soil to perform with the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra at the end of the month.

Duffett, a classical violinist, will perform the Mendelssohn Violin Concerto in the annual symphonic tribute to the late philanthropist, Huberte Rupert.

Duffett was raised in Hout Bay, receiving violin lessons from the late violin pedagogue, Professor Jack de Wet.

Duffett won the National Youth Music Competition Overall Gold Medal twice.

After matriculating from Rondebosch Boys’ High School, Duffett moved to America to study classical violin performance and graduated with honours from the Cleveland Institute of Music.

He then completed his Master’s Degree in Music at Yale University on a Yale scholarship and is currently studying for his Doctorate in
Music under Professor Dana Mazurkevich at the Boston University, on yet another Boston University scholarship.

“Michael considers himself extremely lucky to have been the recipient of an overseas scholarship from the Rondebosch Old Boys’ Union as well as an Oppenheimer Trust scholarship,” his proud mother, Lynda Duffett, said.

She added that her son’s events diary
had filled up very quickly when in May, he had been featured soloist at the Boston Pops, Boston University Night and received a standing
ovation for his performance with the Boston Symphony Pops Orchestra, conducted by Keith Lockhart.

As winner of the Boston University Soloists’ Competition, Duffett was selected by the Boston Symphony Orchestra organisation to perform during the Boston Pops Season at the Pops at Boston Symphony Hall.

Other recent highlights for the rising star includes winning the Boston University Bach Competition for solo Bach works and performing the Mendelssohn Concerto with the Boston University Symphony Orchestra, conducted by Bramwell Tovey.

Duffett is currently the concertmaster of the Boston University Orchestra and a member of the Boston Philharmonic Orchestra.

“He has been concertmaster of other orchestras over the years, with a recent highlight being concertmaster of the Britten-Pears Orchestra, conducted by Marin Alsop, which performed a series of concerts in the UK,” Ms Duffett said.

In past years, Duffett played with various orchestras and ensembles in the UK, the
Netherlands, Germany and South Africa with performances at the Edinburgh Festival and the BBC Proms.

* Michael Duffett performs his Mendelssohn Violin Concerto with the Cape Town Philharmonic Orchestra on Friday November 29.