The Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra’s 2024 season is an ode to joy. With its array of Australian and international talent and a world premiere by Harry Sdraulig in Hobart next year, it’s not hard to feel it.
“Our concerts in 2024 will bring joy and powerful experiences. We want to entertain you, yes, but also move you,” said Eivind Aadland, Chief Conductor and Artistic Director.
Mary Finsterer, Rachmaninov and Tchaikovsky and South Korean pianist Yeol Eum Son open the season on 1 March. Son returns after her 2022 performance to take the lead in Rachmaninov’s Third Piano Concerto.
Following is a celebration of Nordic music, with pianist Alexander Gavrylyuk showing his chops in Grieg’s Piano Concerto in A minor alongside Grieg’s Norsk and Sibelius’s Finlandia and Third Symphony. Under the baton of Ben Northey, there’s also a fête of French music by Boulanger, Debussy, Ravel and Poulenc with guest soprano Stacey Alleume.
Harry Sdraulig – who had previously written the works Icarus and Vortex for the TSO – sees the world premiere of a network on 27 April. Flashout will be debuted next to a performance of Beethoven’s Eroica Symphony and Korngold’s Violin Concerto, with Emily Sun at its helm.
There’s two more Beethoven features in a performance of his Fifth Symphony in a concert that also programs Anna Clyne, Mahler, and soprano Camilla Tilling’s TSO debut. Japanese pianist Nobuyuki Tsujii, a blind performer who learns works exclusively by ear, will also perform Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No. 2 on 2 November, next to Bruckner’s Symphony No. 4.
The internationally-recognised talent of Australian guitarist Karin Schaupp will be showcased works by Borodin, Rodrigo and Rimsky-Korsakov’s Scheherazade under the baton of Kazakh conductor Alan Buribayev.
In addition to Sun, three more violin virtuosos are set to shine in three concertos concertos: TSO Concertmaster Emma McGrath will perform Saint-Saëns’ violin concerto under the baton of Shiyeon Sung on 12 Oct, while international stars Karen Gomyo and Clara-Jumi Kang feature in Dvořák’s Violin Concerto in A minor and Tchaikovsky’s only Violin Concerto, respectively.
In Rejoice in Voice, English conductor Simon Halsey will lead the TSO Chorus and orchestra through works by Mozart and Haydn with soloists Samantha Clarke, Sian Sharp, Andrew Goodwin and Samuel Dundas. The Chorus also brings the season to a festive close with four cantatas from Bach’s Christmas Oratorio, with soprano Amy Moore, mezzo-soprano Hannah Fraser and bass Christopher Richardson.
Out of the mainstage’s spotlight, the 6pm series is an hour-long entree for the evening, which all centre around the talent of an Australian artist – clarinettist Andrew Seymour, Principal Cello Jonathan Békés, pianist Stefan Cassomenos and vocalist Olivia Chindamo, who makes her debut with a work written by her composer father, Joe.
The immersive concert series Obscura is back in three instalments, with guest curators Genevieve Lacey, TSO Chorus Master June Tzyack and violinist Satu Vänska, and a selection of modern and classic works from Australian composers Jabra Latham, Richard Tognetti, Erkki Veltheim, Mary Finsterer and Olivia Davies, and international stars Anna Thorvaldsdottir, Missy Mazzoli, Saariaho and more.
Curated by cellist Békés, three Live Sessions will be housed in slightly off-track venues offering a less formal approach to a concert series and a blend classic and popular music.
Music At Woolmers Estate is a three-part presentation of chamber music. In addition, TSO will host its own Schubertiade across the weekend of 30 November – 1 December at Woolmers in celebration of the chamber repertoire of one of Romanticism’s most prolific composers.
TSO special events for 2024 include two Brass At St David’s concerts, a performance of Mozart’s Requiem by the TSO Chorus, a screening and live performance of Maria Grenfell’s score for Living with Devils, and the ANAM Concerto Competition, where three student finalists perform as soloists accompanied by the TSO.
“As an orchestra, we give a feeling, an experience,” said Aadland. “You will walk out of a concert and feel something different inside of you.”
More about the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra’s 2024 season can be found here.