Geelong Symphony Orchestra
Our friends at the GSO have just announced their first concert for 2021. This will also be one of the first for Geelong after the troubled 2020.
An all Mozart concert is planned featuring Joshua Batty - Josh is Principal flute for the Sydney Symphony. The program will be conducted by Richard Davis.
Planning in a Pandemic
Early Spring is usually the time in which we announce the details of GCMS’s concert series for the following year. In this regard, as in so many others, 2020 is proving different.
Our Committee has valiantly worked through the multiple uncertainties facing all arts organisations as we seek to plan arrangements for the Society in the New Year.
Our hope, of course, is eventually to return to concerts in McAuley Hall, enjoying superb performances by our chosen ensembles and recitalists in the company of our familiar audience of members and subscribers. Much will have to change before that hope can be realised.
Meanwhile, reflecting on the experience of coping with the Covid-19 restrictions this year, we have tried to simplify our plans.
We accept that at least for the first six months of 2021 it is most unlikely that we can present live concerts in the usual way.
Instead, we have organised with our friends at Melbourne Digital Concert Hall to present two performances on a single night, showcasing the depth of Geelong’s musical talent. In this we are repeating the successful initiative this year featuring Miranda Brockman and Kenji Fujimura in one recital, and Lee Abrahmsen and Caroline Almonte. In the other. We have invited local soprano Sally Wilson to perform for us next year, together with the baroque specialists Evergreen Ensemble (led by Geelong resident Shane Lestideau). Our selected musicians have responded enthusiastically to this invitation, while MDCH are very happy to be our platform once again.
For the second half of 2021 we are planning three concerts.
We have engaged three ensembles whose engagements with us this year had to be cancelled: the Melbourne Chamber Orchestra, Musicians from the Australian National Academy of Music, and the Flinders Quartet. Full details for these concerts will be announced when it is possible to finalise plans. With the chequered history of 2020 in mind, and with the willing cooperation of our artists, we are keeping these options as flexible as possible.
Our members and audience can be reassured that their health and safety, as well as that of our performers and of staff at any venue, will be foremost in our planning. Jan Lavelle had led a working party to equip us with the principles and essentials for a Covid-safe plan for 2021. I’m most grateful to them for their effective work on this.
Meanwhile, I’m sure that we’re all grateful to David Fox for his listings of music to be enjoyed on-line. (And those composer birthday pics too!) It is never the same as our live series, but these performances definitely assist musicians starved of regular concert engagements. They can also keep alive the memory of many remarkable experiences with GCMS.
The Committee and I wish all of our GCMS friends well during this baffling time. We do look forward to being with you again next year, as soon as conditions for that are safe for all.
We’ll keep in touch meanwhile to report on progress with details of our program as these are finalised.
With warm regards,