Season Preview: Your guide to the arts in 2020

The Canberra Symphony Orchestra has announced its 2020 season, New Spaces, which boasts an emphasis on new works and early career composers. Not only will it be Chief Conductor and Artistic Director Nicholas Milton’s farewell season after a 14-year tenure, 2020 also marks the CSO’s 70th anniversary.

Chief Conductor and Artistic Director Nicholas Milton

“I feel deeply honoured to have been part of the rich and vibrant history of the Canberra Symphony Orchestra,” Milton said. “We have shared extraordinary moments on stage, and I am proud of all that we have together accomplished.”

Speaking of the new season, the conductor said, “New Spaces celebrates our unique orchestral landscape. It expresses the passion, virtuosity and daring of our orchestra.” Milton’s successor will be announced in 2020.

New works will be a pillar of the CSO’s Australian Series, a collaboration with the National Portrait Gallery curated by composer Matthew Hindson. Featuring several commissioned works and world premieres, as well as a new piece by the winner of the 2020 Sue W Chamber Music Composition Prize, audiences can expect to hear both established and emerging composers like Stuart Greenbaum, Cyrus Meurant, Ella Macens, Harry Sdraulig and Anne Boyd.

Umberto Clerici

The CSO’s Artist in Focus for 2020 will be Umberto Clerici, Principal Cellist with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. He will not only appear as soloist, but conduct as well as mentor the orchestra’s incoming Kingsland Resident Artists. Highlights of his residency include conducting Mozart’s Fourth Violin Concerto, to be performed by Natalie Chee, and a performance of Shostakovich’s Cello Concerto, for which he is the soloist. Other soloists for 2020 include clarinettist Alan Vivian and pianist Konstantin Shamray.

The Llewellyn Series will meanwhile include old favourites like Saint-Saëns’ Organ Symphony and Mahler’s Fifth, while the CSO’s ‘Best of British’ tribute to the Last Night of the Proms features soprano Lorina Gore and a massed choir performing standards like Elgar’s Pomp and Circumstance March, Jerusalem and Rule Brittania. Fans of Fleetwood Mac will also have the opportunity to attend a free Symphony in the Park concert drawing from the band’s classic album Rumours, to be conducted by George Ellis.


Full season details