Australian Chamber Orchestra
“If there’s a better Chamber Orchestra in the world today, I haven’t heard it.”
THE GUARDIAN (UK)
From its first concert in November 1975 to today, the Australian Chamber Orchestra has travelled a remarkable road. With inspiring programming, unrivalled virtuosity, energy and individuality, the Orchestra’s performances span popular masterworks, adventurous cross-artform projects and pieces specially commissioned for the ensemble.
Founded by the cellist John Painter, the ACO originally comprised just 13 players, who came together for concerts as they were invited. Today, the ACO has grown to 21 players (four part-time), giving more than 100 performances in Australia each year, as well as touring internationally: from red-dust regional centres of Australia to New York night clubs, from Australian capital cities to the world’s most prestigious concert halls, including Amsterdam’s Concertgebouw, London’s Wigmore Hall, Vienna’s Musikverein, New York’s Carnegie Hall, Birmingham’s Symphony Hall and Frankfurt’s Alte Oper.
Since the ACO was formed in 1975, it has toured Indonesia, Singapore, Thailand, Malaysia, Hong Kong, Japan, New Zealand, Italy, France, Austria, Switzerland, England, Belgium, The Netherlands, Germany, China, Greece, the US, Scotland, Chile, Argentina, Croatia, the former Yugoslavia, Slovenia, Brazil, Uruguay, New Caledonia, Czech Republic, Slovak Republic, Spain, Luxembourg, Macau, Taiwan, Estonia, Canada, Poland, Puerto Rico and Ireland.
The ACO’s dedication and musicianship has created warm relationships with such celebrated soloists as Emmanuel Pahud, Steven Isserlis, Dawn Upshaw, Imogen Cooper, Christian Lindberg, Joseph Tawadros, Melvyn Tan and Pieter Wispelwey. The ACO is renowned for collaborating with artists from diverse genres, including singers Tim Freedman, Neil Finn, Meow Meow, Katie Noonan, Paul Capsis, Danny Spooner and Barry Humphries and visual artists Michael Leunig, Bill Henson, Shaun Tan and Jon Frank.
The ACO has recorded for the world’s top labels. Their recordings have won three consecutive ARIA Awards, and documentaries featuring the ACO have been shown on television worldwide and won awards at film festivals on four continents.