ZAMAR CLASSICAL FUSION
Sunday 27 May 15:00
The Oaks Estate
Zamar has been enticing audiences with their passionate and highly entertaining performances for more than a decade. For the Classics for All Festival they take concert-goers on a tour around the world, visiting many different countries through well-known light classical music by composers such as Bach, Mozart, Jenkins, Kachaturian, Massenet, Vivaldi and Lehar and others. With Veronica Bell (violin), Monika Stuchlik (accordion), Ronald Siegelaar (djembe & percussion), Heini Jack (bass) and Philip Vermeulen (guitar). SEE BIOGRAPHIES BELOW
Heini Jack (bassist)
This born and raised in Port Elizabeth bassist started off with playing the acoustic guitar at the age of 12, but was soon a converted bassist after being exposed to Jazz in 2001. In Stellenbosch, he was part of establishing the local jazz group, ESP, which produced a platform for upcoming Jazz musicians such as Ramon Alexander (pianist), Annemie Nel (drummer), Simangele Mashazi (vocalist playing the younger Miriam Makeba in the 2017 Artscape Theatre Production), to name a few.
Heini had the opportunity to play for a diverse list of musicians in the likes of Abel Kraamsaal, Die Broers, Robbie Jansen, Alvyn Dyers, Alta Joubert. He has had exposure to the South African Music festivals eg KKNK, Rittelfees, Aartklop, Stellenbosch Woordfees. He also had the opportunity to play live in a Leon Schuster movie, Mama Jack.
Apart from running his own bass and guitar lessons, he also teaches at W. Heuer Musikhaus and are actively involved with community projects in and around Stellenbosch. Being an entrepreneur, he owns HJ Productions, which is a Sound and Visual Company. Heini has been playing for Zamar since 2016.
Philip Vermeulen (Guitarist)
Currently pursuing the accelerated programme of the Stellenbosch University Music Certificate programme, Philip has played the guitar since the age of six. He was completely self-taught until at the age of nineteen when he took guitar lessons at the jazz workshop in Cape Town, where for the first time, he learnt to read music.
Apart from playing for Zamar since mid 2016, Vermeulen currently plays in the Stellenbosch University Jazz Band under the leadership of Felicia Lesch and is also a member of the US Gig Band (small ensemble) which he leads.
He has shared the stage with the likes of PJ Powers, Gloria Bosman, Corlea Botha, Jannie Moolman and more. He has also played Friedrich Gulda’s Cello Concerto as a member of the USSBE under the direction of Pamela Kierman with soloist Peter Martens. In November 2017, Vermeulen was chosen to be part of the production company of Cape Town Opera to stage the performance of the Mandela Trilogy touring to Dubai and Hong Kong.
Monika Stuchlik (Kahl) (Accordionist)
Monika is an experienced and passionate musician who loves playing classical, traditional, continental, gypsy and modern music. After growing up and living in Johannesburg for 25 years, she lived in Europe for over 5 years and now settled in Cape Town since 2012.
Monika started playing the piano-accordion when she was 3 years old. Over the years she learnt to play many other instruments including the austrian bells, zither, chromonica (4 different types), panflute, penny whistle, steeldrums, piano, keyboard etc.
Since Monika was 5 years old, she performed all over southern Africa in her father Otto Kahl’s very successful German band as well as performing as a family trio with her younger sister and father. In 1994, when she was 13 years old, she competed in the accordion world championships in Italy, where she was placed 2nd. In addition to winning many other championships, she also won the National Eisteddfod in 1998, coming 1st out of 93,000 participants. Over the years, she appeared in numerous newspaper articles, radio and TV shows.
Monika has freelanced for Zamar, but it is only in September 2017 that she started playing as preferred accordionist for this dynamic group. Monika’s father is German, her mother is from Switzerland, her husband is from Czech Republic and she was born and raised in South Africa, therefore she is fluent in German, Swiss-German, English, Afrikaans and gets by with Czech; she also sings in Zulu, Sotho, Xhosa and other African languages.
Ronald Siegelaar (Drummer; Percussionist)
Ronald is the highly skilled and gifted professional drummer playing for Zamar since 2016. He started playing the drums at the age of fourteen, being self-taught until after matric in 2007. This is when he had opportunity to take formal lessons with Suzette Brits at the University of Stellenbosch Music Department. He achieved Grade 8 of the Rock School Syllabus in drum kit and Grade 5 Royal Schools in percussion. In 2010, he became the drummer for the Stellenbosch University Jazz Band and continue to play gigs with them on request. 2010 and 2011 saw him as the runner up drummer for the Standard Bank National Youth Jazz Band Competition. In 2012, he attended the Unisa International Jazz School in Pretoria and won the National Ensemble competition in 2013 with his jazz trio. He was the drummer for the Imagine South band in 2014 for the Imagine movement in the Western Cape.
His love for the drums started with gospel music, “I have been playing gospel music ever since I became proficient in the drums.” He, therefor, commits his talent to the International Church Movement of Every Nation, Stellenbosch.
He taught drum kit at Musiekhaus W. Heuer from 2011 until 2016 and since 2012 until mid- 2017 were employed full time at Paul Roos Gymnasium as teacher.
Some of the artists Ronald have worked with over the years include Gloria Bosman, Elle Amor, Heinz Winckler, PJ Powers, Grethe van der Merwe, Bianca La Grange.
Veronica Bell (Violinist, vocalist, pianist)
Veronica is the passionate violinist of Zamar using this beautiful instrument to speak a language of hope and passion for life! She began her violin lessons at the age of four from Mrs. Clutton in Newcastle. During her school years she took lessons from Mr. Ahlers (Johannesburg), Professor Allen Solomon (Johannesburg), Mr. La Castro (Durban) and Mrs. Robertson (Pietermaritzburg).
She furthered her studies at the University of Pretoria in 1991 with Prof Allen Solomon, but she continued studying at the University of Stellenbosch from the year 1993, where she was being taught by Professor Jack de Wet. In 1994 she performed with the Cape Town Symphonic Orchestra as solo violinist during the National Youth Festival and completed her Teachers degree in Violin. In 1995 she studied her Practical Honours in Bachelor Music Ensemble work under the teaching of Professor Eric Rycroft. Other performances that highlight her career as solo artist is her part as solo violinist in the Mozart Mannewales Production during the “Volksbladfees” in 2006, KKNK 2007 and the Organ and Violin performance called, “Four Seasons” alongside Mario Nell. They rearranged Vivaldi’s Four Seasons for violin and orchestra, and Astor Piazzolla’s Four Seasons from Buenos Aires for organ and violin in the Moederkerk in Stellenbosch.
She also received training in piano (UNISA grade 8 and four year University training under Ella Fourie (TUKS) and Bennie van Eeden (University of Stellenbosch) and vocal (UNISA grade 6). During her studies she accompanied students for their examinations.
She’s played the violin in Zamar since 2005 and as a result of that has performed with many of South Africa’s well known artists, like Jannie Moolman, Rina Hugo, Danie Niehaus, Anna Davel , Karen Meiring, Chris Chameleon, Lise Beekman, Matthys Roets, Janine Neethling and Steve Hofmeyer.
Veronica is married to Usher and they have four kids.