February 1, 2016

By Performing Arts Writer, 27 Jan 2016

Newly commissioned works by Australian composers will be a key feature of the partnership.

New works by Australian composers Lisa Illean, Brett Dean and Gerard Grisey, as well as significant works by contemporary American composers Frederic Rzewski and Steve Reich, will be performed by Sydney Symphony Orchestra (SSO) at Carriageworks as part of a new partnership between the two institutions.

Composer Lisa Illean. Image: Cathy Pyle

The partnership will result in two specially programmed concerts, the NEW MUSIC series, at the multi-arts space in the former Eveleigh Rail Yards.

Lisa Havilah, Director of Carriageworks, said: ‘I am delighted that the program of brand new works for the two SSO concerts in March and November have been devised by SSO Chief Conductor and Artistic Director David Robertson and SSO Artist in Residence Brett Dean especially for Carriageworks. Together, they have programmed some of the world’s most intriguing and engaging contemporary music, including works by Dean himself and American composer Steve Reich.’

Brett Dean, the SSO’s Artist in Residence for the next thee years, said it was highly significant that the SSO was now part of the reinvention of the Carriageworks.

‘Carriageworks was built between 1880 and 1889, a time during which the symphony orchestra as a concept seemed to blossom around the world. So there’s a charming symmetry between the reinvention of Carriageworks as a space for new art and the SSO venturing out in to new territory,’ he said.

‘The programs I have curated with David Robertson place newly commissioned works by Australian composers at the very centre of the series yet within the broader context of landmark works by major composers from other parts of the world. The Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s marvelous commissioning program makes such an undertaking possible and is to be applauded.’

The first concert of the new series, Crossing the Threshold, will see SSO Chief Conductor and Artistic Director David Robertson lead a performance of new Australian work by composers Lisa Illean, Brett Dean and Gerard Grisey on Sunday 13 March.

Oblique Strategies, the second concert in the NEW MUSIC series on Sunday 20 November,consists of a program of contemporary music programed by Brett Dean, including Steve Reich’s minimalist piece Clapping Music and Frederic Rzewski’s Panurge’s Sheep.