A new portrait of the maestro has been unveiled to celebrate his continuing work with the SSO.

The Sydney Symphony today announced the official extension of Vladimir Ashkenazy’s contract as Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor to the end of 2013. His role within the orchestra will continue for at least another year on top of his initial planned tenure of 2009 – 2012.

The NSW Minister for Arts George Souris said of the extended appointment, in a written statement: “As the Sydney Symphony heads into its 80th year next year, it is appropriate that our country’s finest orchestra is being led and mentored by one of the world’s greatest conductors… who has taken the Sydney Symphony to even greater heights”.

In the April issue of Limelight,Ashkenazy was full of praise for the orchestra, referring to the players as “my people, the SSO” and rating them among “the very, very best in the world”.

The maestro will oversee the ongoing development of a three-phase growth strategy: recording, overseas tours and securing internationally renowned soloists to play with the orchestra at home.

Ashkenazy features on five albums on the Sydney Symphony Live label including four from his acclaimed two-year Mahler cycle,...

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