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The Australian Brandenburg Orchestra has announced its 2021 NSW Season, a diverse program of six live concert series, with a further Melbourne season to be announced in January. Celebrating the best of Baroque, the season will present Australian debut performances from international guest artists, an exciting theatrical collaboration with CIRCA Contemporary Circus and Australian premiere arrangements.

Alongside the live concert season, for the very first time, each mainstage concert in the 2021 season will be filmed and released as a broadcast quality production on the innovative new digital platform Brandenburg One, bringing the Australian Brandenburg Orchestra to audiences across Australia on demand.

After a triumphant return to the stage in October following the suspension of their 2020 season due to COVID-19, the Orchestra’s 2021 season will start by uniting the Brandenburg Orchestra and Choir once more in a full return to live performance with Handel’s Rome at Sydney’s City Recital Hall (24 February – 5 March). The concert will see two concertos from violinist Arcangelo Corelli’s Twelve Concerti Grossi in luminous arrangements for string orchestra, Baroque trumpets and sackbuts. The concert will conclude with one of Handel’s most eternal works, Dixit Dominus.

Two leading Australian singers, Sara Macliver and Russell Harcourt, will share the stage for Higher Angels, an exposition of Baroque arias and duets contrasting the high male and female voices, soprano with countertenor. The program will move through music by Bach, Handel, Monteverdi, Porpora and Vivaldi and will be presented at City Recital Hall, Sydney (21 April – 5 May) and Riverside Theatre in Parramatta (29 April).

Making his Australian debut, German Baroque violinist Jonas Zschenderlein will lead the orchestra in a performance of Bach’s Violin concerto in E major and a pure period instrument performance of the composer's timeless Orchestral Suite No. 3 in D major for Bach’s Universe. In a unique visual and sonic experience performed at City Recital Hall (21 – 30 July), members of the orchestra will offer an intimate vision of Bach’s instrumental works. The stage will become illuminated with musicians joining in Artistic Director Paul Dyer’s expansive all-Bach pasticcio.

For Poet of the Violin, expressive Swiss-Iranian Baroque violinist Leila Schayegh performs for the first time in Australia on a rare instrument, Santa Teresia, made in Cremona in 1675 by legendary luthier and founder of Casa Guarneri, Andrea Guarneri. Having undergone several detailed restorations in Paris, Santa Teresia has now been returned to its original Baroque configuration and is on full display during this performance moving through a program of Leclair, Bach and Vivaldi.

Collaborating once more with CIRCA Contemporary Circus, Italian Baroque with Circa will take audiences for a rollicking ride through the music of four Italian cities and their multi-layered pasts at City Recital Hall, Sydney (27 October – 5 November). Daring new choreography will combine musicians and acrobats in a vibrant performance of music by Brescianello, Corelli and Vivaldi amongst others.

Closing out the season, annual favourite Noël! Noël! heralds in the holiday season at City Recital Hall, Sydney (11 – 15 December), with a serene performance of Stille Nacht by the Brandenburg Choir, alongside a program featuring rare medieval hymns, sublime sopranos and Baroque trumpets and sackbuts.

We can’t wait to unite our full orchestra and choir to share in the magic of live performance once again.

Co-Founder and Artistic Director Paul Dyer said: “I’ve missed the electricity and anticipation of live performance over the past year, so I am ecstatic to be launching our 2021 NSW live season, opening with a flourish of Baroque trumpets and sackbuts for ‘Handel’s Rome’ and giving Australian audiences a chance to see incredible international artists in this time of limited international travel. Musicians get our buzz and energy from each another and from our audiences. We share their excitement during a surging crescendo and feel the collective bliss in the space between the final note of an aria and the audience’s applause. We can’t wait to unite our full orchestra and choir to share in the magic of live performance once again.”

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