On the eve of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s 2024 Opening Gala, the SSO has announced that Simone Young will serve as Chief Conductor for another two years. Young’s contract to lead the orchestra now extends to the end of 2026.

Sydney Symphony Orchestra Chief Conductor Simone Young. Photo © Peter Brew-Bevan

Young was announced as Chief Conductor Designate in 2019 and formally took up the role of Chief Conductor of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in 2022, becoming the third Australian and first woman to hold that position.

Leading the SSO out of the pandemic years, Young’s Chief Conductorship have been marked by a series of artistic highs, including her conducting of Mahler’s Symphony No. 2 to reopen the refurbished Sydney Opera House Concert Hall and the commencement of a four-year project to present Richard Wagner’s Ring Cycle in concert – the first time these works have been performed in Sydney in almost 30 years – beginning with Das Rheingold in November 2023.

In 2024 Young’s concerts include the Sydney premiere of Austrian composer Arnold Schoenberg’s colossal Gurrelieder; Mendelssohn’s Violin Concerto with star violinist Augustin Hadelich; Bruckner’s Symphony...