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Variety adds spice to ASO's 2016 season


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The Adelaide Symphony Orchestra’s 80th birthday year will see it present a new genre-bending series, music from iconic films such as Jaws and offerings for younger music fans that include concert after-parties.

It will also play in an operatic adaptation of author Tim Winton’s popular novel Cloudstreet being staged next May by the State Opera of SA.

“A great season of music-making is about variety of repertoire,” new principal conductor Nicholas Carter said of the ASO 2016 season launched last night.

“In 2016 there is music from the Baroque to Stravinsky and Shostakovich, as well as great classics by Beethoven and Brahms, but also some lesser-known works by Messiaen and living Australian composers, too.”

A highlight of the popular Showcase program will be Movie Masterpieces, hosted by film critic Margaret Pomeranz and conducted by Guy Noble. Following on from this year’s ASO tribute to the music of James Bond films, the May concert will features signature theme songs from movies such as Lawrence of Arabia, Gone With the Wind, Jaws and The Mission.

Noble will also conduct the circus-orchestral music fusion Cirque de la Symphonie, Last Night of the Proms, and a series of informal, 75-minute Classics Unwrapped concerts.

New series Gigs at Grainger (at the orchestra’s Grainger studio) is the result of a collaboration with Adelaide saxophonist Adam Page and jazz violinist Julian Ferraretto. It features two shows, one of which promises a night of “hard-swinging Gypsy-infused music”, while the other will incorporate live looping, solos and improv.

The orchestra will reach out to younger music fans with the introduction of a ReMastered series for under-30s which includes special-price tickets as well as after-parties following four key concerts throughout the year: Elegant Tchaikovsky, Glorious Brahms, Elgar’s Cello Concerto and Fantastic Symphony.

The 2016 season is said to reflect the experiences and interests of the ASO’s new leadership team appointed earlier this year and consisting of 30-year-old Carter, British conductor Jeffrey Tate as principal guest conductor and artistic adviser, and Pinchas Zuckerman as artist-in-association.


Pianist Bezhod will play Prokofiev’s Third Piano Concerto at a concert in June. Photo: Christian Fatu

It will open on February 13 with Carter & Wagner, in which Carter will make his debut as principal conductor with Die Walküre (a chapter from Wagner’s Ring Cycle), and Beethoven’s Violin Concerto, with mezzo-soprano Michelle de Young and tenor Simon O’Neill.

Zuckerman will play in and conduct a series of concerts next November, including a chamber music performance featuring the Zuckerman Trio, while Tait will conduct two programs in October featuring Strauss’s Ein Heldenleben and Brahms’ Symphony No. 3.

Guest conductors joining the ASO throughout the season will include Mark Wigglesworth (Noble Elgar) and Simone Young (Simone Young & Mahler), with pianists Nelson Freire (Brazil) and Bezhod (Uzbekistan) and violinists James Ehnes (Canada) and Grace Clifford (Australia) among the guest performers.

There are also four family shows for children, including The Gruffalo at Her Majesty’s Theatre in October.

“For the first time in Adelaide, as part of an Australian premiere season, The Gruffalo, an enchanting double-bill of films based on the best-selling children’s picture books, will be screened with live orchestral accompaniment,” ASO managing director Vincent Ciccarello said.

As previously announced, the ASO will also join Grammy-winning musician Angelique Kidjo for a one-off performance at WOMADelaide on March 11 and perform in the special Tectonics Adelaide program being curated and conducted by Ilan Volkov during the Adelaide Festival.



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