Australian Chamber Orchestra

If it’s a classical or jazz performance you’re interested in attending throughout the month of August, 2MBS Fine Music Sydney have made some hand picked highlights to help you decide.

Saturday August 5: ACO Up Close: Musicians of the Gewandhaus
ACO Pier 2/3 (Suite 3/13A Hickson Rd, Dawes Point NSW 2000)
The earliest roots of Leipzig’s Gewandhaus Orchestra can be traced back as far as 1479, making it one of the world’s oldest and most distinguished orchestras.This concert is an opportunity to hear eight of its members in the intimate chamber music setting of ACO Pier 2/3, performing an enthralling program of music by Franz Schubert.

The Moments Musicaux – beloved miniatures for solo piano – are heard in arrangements by Danish composer Hans Abrahamsen, writing for the rich instrumental line-up of Schubert’s Octet.

ACO Up Close takes place in The Neilson, the state-of-the art 270-seat concert hall at the newly opened ACO Pier 2/3 in the Walsh Bay Arts Precinct. Acclaimed for its extraordinary acoustic, The Neilson provides an intimate context for these concerts.

Sunday August 6: Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra – Mendelssohn Scottish & Beethoven Eight | Midsummer Dreams
Joan Sutherland Performing Arts Centre (597 High Street Penrith, NSW, 2750)
Like all European young men of means in the 19th century, Felix Mendelssohn set off on a Grand Tour of Europe at the age of 20. Unusually, however, Mendelssohn elected to begin in Scotland – and while there he was greatly moved by the dramatic landscape and the bloody history of Mary Queen of Scots. He began writing his Scottish Symphony while on his tour, although he didn’t complete it until a decade later. But clearly, Scotland had left its mark on him, and the symphony seems to evoke the striking countryside.

Equally evocative is Mendelssohn’s Overture to Shakespeare’s A Midsummer Night’s Dream, written when he was just 16 – the quick, playful strings at the start suggest the scampering of fairies’ feet, and later one can hear the braying of Bottom after he has been turned into a donkey.

Beethoven’s Eighth Symphony features a lightness of touch, but it is perhaps his most radical symphony. It completely abandons the traditional structure of a symphony, leaps from loud to soft without warning, and at every turn surprises and confounds expectations. When asked by his pupil Carl Czerny why the Eighth was less popular than the Seventh, Beethoven is said to have replied, “because the Eighth is so much better” – an appropriately enigmatic answer for a fascinating work!

Monday August 7 : Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra – Voyage of Musical Discovery | Musical Identities
City Recital Hall (2 Angel Place, Sydney NSW 2000)
The Voyage of Musical Discovery series was established and designed by the Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra and its founding artistic director and world-renowned educator, the late Richard Gill AO.The third Voyage of Musical Discovery of 2023 reveals the multiple identities of composer and performer and the links between them. The Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra and Australia’s musical trailblazers Ensemble Offspring will explore common threads in music from the past and in the latest works by Australian women composers.

Sydney-based Ensemble Offspring is known for their diverse and engaging programs and their championing of emerging and women composers. This program will feature music by three distinctive Australian voices: Fiona Loader; Yuin composer and musician Brenda Gifford; and Nardi Simpson, a Yuwaalaraay writer, musician and composer.

Thursday August 10: CRH Classical: Jack Liebeck and Katya Apekisheva
City Recital Hall (2 Angel Place, Sydney NSW 2000)
A quasi Schubertiade for this intimate evening of music for violin and piano. Enjoy Schubert’s affable Duo Sonata and Brahms’ lyrical Sonata No.1, alongside the world premiere of a new work from Paul Dean. Plus, from pioneering 20th century composer and musician Rebecca Clarke, her captivating and evocative Midsummer Moon. And what would a violin recital be without some fireworks from the great virtuoso and composer Fritz Kreisler?

Thursday August 10: Simon Tedeschi with special guest violinist, Cedar-Rose Newman
Camelot Lounge (Cnr 103 Railway Pde & 19 Marrickville Rd, Marrickville)
Brilliant pianist Simon Tedeschi returns to Camelot Lounge with breathtakingly talented young violinist, Cedar Newman, in a program celebrating music of the 1920s and 30s. The infusion of jazz into classical music during this period brought exciting new colours to the classical genre, unmistakeable in Gershwin’s Porgy and Bess Suite, and Ravel’s Blues Sonata for violin and piano. Add the serene, spiritual and ecstatic melodies of Bloch’s Poeme Mystique and Prokofiev’s Without Words, and this will be a performance to remember.

About Cedar: from successful busing at folk festivals at age 13, Cedar packed her bags and went to study with legendary violinist Albert Markov in New York. Just returned, a decade later, from studying at the Manhattan School of Music where she was a scholarship student with Professor Lucie Robert, Cedar has been a semi-finalist in the Classicalia International Music Competition, a finalist in the Melbourne Bach Competition and a recent winner of the 2023 Eva Pascoe Award, with her ecent performances of Piazzolla’s ‘Four Seasons of Buenos Aires’ captivating audiences in Bowral, Wollongong and Canberra.

“Cedar Newman is an exceptional talent who was born to play the violin. She speaks through her instrument and touches all who are fortunate enough to hear her” – Prof. Lucie Robert, Manhattan School of Music.

Sunday August 13: Sydney To Mumbai: A Symphonic Journey to Incredible India
Verbrugghen Hall, Sydney Conservatorium of Music (1 Conservatorium Rd, Sydney NSW)
Join us in the magnificent castle of the Sydney Conservatorium for an enchanting journey with the Australian Indian Orchestra, Australia’s first symphony orchestra dedicated to performing Indian music. 

Experience the vibrant rhythms and beautiful melodies of Bollywood songs like you have never heard before – played with a 50-piece symphony orchestra conducted by Suraj Nagaraj. Whether you are a Bollywood lover, a classical music tragic, or someone seeking a unique and memorable experience, this is the show for you.

Featuring some of the most memorable songs from the most celebrated Bollywood movies and artists across the decades including: Mohd. Rafi, Kishore Kumar, Lata Mangeshkar, Hariharan, Shankar Mahadevan, Sonu Nigam, Shreya Ghoshal, Arijit Singh and more.

Friday August 18: Katie Noonan
The Great Club (160-164 Livingstone Rd, Marrickville, NSW)
Over the past 20 years, five-time ARIA award-winning artist Katie Noonan has proven herself one of Australia’s most hardworking, versatile and prolific artists. Named one of the greatest Australian singers of all time by the Herald Sun, Katie has produced 24 albums throughout her career, with seven times platinum record sales under her belt and 28 ARIA award nominations that span diverse genres.

In this intimate performance, Katie will be previewing new material that will make up the forthcoming album ‘Being not Doing’ as well as some of her most loved songs. Katie is performing with her trio that features Steele Chabau (bass) and Dexter Hurren (drums).

Thursday August 24: Sydney Symphony Orchestra – Andrew Haveron Directs Britten’s Serenade
City Recital Hall (2 Angel Place, Sydney NSW 2000)
One of the most influential British composers of last century, Britten’s music is lyrical, heartfelt and highly charged. His is an original voice with unmistakable authenticity.

In the beautifully intimate setting of the City Recital Hall, Sydney Symphony Concertmaster Andrew Haveron directs this performance featuring Berlin Philharmonic Principal Horn Stefan Dohr. Sydney-born and internationally renowned tenor Andrew Goodwin is the perfect partner for Britten’s Serenade, and its poetry set to music.

Like Britten, Shostakovich is one of the most significant composers of the 20th century. This Chamber Symphony is the result of conductor Rudolf Barshai transcribing Shostakovich’s Tenth String Quartet for a larger ensemble. The result is at once personal and powerful, combining the directness of the quartet with the richness of a larger ensemble.

Friday August 25: Jackie Bornstein Quartet
Foundry 616 (616 Harris Street, Ultimo NSW 2007)
Jackie Bornstein is one of Melbourne’s most enchanting jazz and bossa nova singers. Jackie will perform a stunning repertoire with a focus on female composers from across the globe, singing in English, French, Spanish and Portuguese. Expect a beautiful mixture of swing, bossa nova and poetry driven songs. Featuring the rich vocals of Jackie Bornstein, Sydney’s own guitar master Carl Dewhurst, bass heavyweight Brett Hirst and Melbourne’s rising jazz star Yael Zamir on flute.

“An enchanting vocalist and captivating storyteller” Australian Jazz

Wednesday August 30: Kurt Elling & Charlie Hunter
City Recital Hall (2 Angel Place, Sydney NSW 2000)
Prepare for an unforgettable night as jazz icon Kurt Elling and guitar maestro Charlie Hunter join forces for a mesmerizing musical experience. With a career spanning three decades, Elling’s innovative vocalese and astounding improvisational skills have made him a leading figure in jazz, captivating audiences worldwide.

Elling’s new LP, “SuperBlue: The Iridescent Spree,” showcases his growing ambition and experimentation, setting him apart from other vocalists in the jazz scene. In collaboration with producer/guitarist Hunter, the duo presents a kaleidoscopic collection of new songs, unexpected covers, and dynamic reinventions.

Charlie Hunter, a trailblazing musician, amplifies this extraordinary collaboration with his distinct sound and artistic prowess. Known for his ability to play bass lines, rhythm guitar, and solos simultaneously, Hunter creates an immersive and enchanting musical landscape.

Elling and Hunter are joined by Kenny Banks Jr on keyboards and Marcus Finnie on drums, adding even more depth to this incredible lineup. So, what are you waiting for? Grab your tickets now for a night of unforgettable jazz at Sydney Recital Hall and get ready to have your mind blown by the unstoppable duo of Kurt Elling and Charlie Hunter. Trust us, this is one gig you don’t want to miss!