Fateful – Brahms & Tchaikovsky

Date: Sunday 5 December, 2pm

Where: Verbrugghen Hall, Sydney Conservatorium of Music

Repertoire: Brahms Violin Concerto & Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony

Tickets: Book Here

Let’s try that again! The hugely-anticipated final concert from last year, a casualty of Fate, is now rescheduled for 2021.

Who would want to miss this: two of the country’s most esteemed performers – conductor Alexander Briger AO and guest soloist Sydney Symphony concertmaster Andrew Haveron – in a program that features one of the greatest Romantic concertos plus one of its most dramatic symphonies, the two composed less than a year apart, each the fruit of their composer’s most fateful relationship.

Brahms Violin Concerto was dedicated to his friend Joseph Joachim, one of the 19th century’s greatest virtuosos, while Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony was dedicated to his patroness Nadezhda von Meck; artistic and financial support, in turn, enabling these masterpieces to come into existence.

Both works end in blazing fashion; Brahms in a rambunctious ‘Magyar’ finale, reminiscent of the Gypsy-style party turns he used to perform with his friend Joachim, and Tchaikovsky with a riotous Russian carnival atmosphere punctuated at its end by the motif of ‘Fate’ with which his symphony begins – life’s tumult stopped short before moving on. In 2021, a symbol of the times!

Conductor: Alexander Briger AO

Alexander Briger is one of Australia’s preeminent conductors, having worked with Maestros Zubin Mehta, Pierre Boulez and Riccardo Muti. Awarded the Order of Australia for “services to music as a leading conductor”, he is considered a specialist in the works of Janáček and Mozart.

Alexander’s recent engagements include performances with the London Symphony Orchestra, the Israel Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra of the Teatro San Carlo, Naples, Mozart’s Die Zauberflöte at the Toulon Opera and John Adams’ I Was Looking at the Ceiling and Then I Saw the Sky with the Teatro dell’Opera di Roma and at the Théâtre du Châtelet, Paris, following a hugely successful debut at the same theatre conducting the Paris premiere of Adams’ Nixon in China.

He has also worked with such orchestras as the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra, Academy of St Martin in the Fields, Orchestre de Paris, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Ensemble InterContemporain, Konzerthaus Orchester, Berlin, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie, Frankfurt Radio Orchestra, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Gothenburg Symphony, Swedish Radio Orchestra, Salzburg Mozarteum, Malaysian Philharmonic and every major Australian symphony orchestras.

He has performed regularly with the Philharmonia Orchestra in London (collaborating with such soloists as Alfred Brendel, Maria Joao Pires and Murray Perahia) and the London Philharmonic Orchestra, including their 2004 China tour. He has also worked with such soloists as Paul Lewis, Kirill Gerstein and Julia Fisher.

Considered an opera specialist, Alexander has conducted for the Royal Opera House Covent Garden, English National Opera, Glyndebourne Festival, Aix-en-Provence Festival, Théâtre du Châtelet, Teatro dell’Opera di Roma, Teatro di San Carlo Opera, Naples, Berlin Komischeoper, Canadian Opera Company, Opera Australia amongst others.

In 2010, he founded the Australian World Orchestra, of which he is Artistic Director and Chief Conductor.

Future engagements include concerts with the London Philharmonic, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Australian World Orchestra, Jenůfa with the Montreal Opera, The Turn of the Screw at the Paris Philharmonie and Figaro at the Bolshoi, Moscow.


Guest Soloist: Andrew Haveron

Andrew Haveron joined the Sydney Symphony Orchestra as Co-Concertmaster in 2013, arriving in Sydney with a reputation as one of the most sought-after violinists of his generation. With his unrivalled versatility, he is highly respected as a soloist, chamber musician and concertmaster.

As a soloist, he has played concertos with conductors such as Colin Davis, Roger Norrington, Jiří Bělohlávek, Stanisław Skrowaczewski and John Wilson, as well as David Robertson, performing a broad range of well-known and less familiar repertoire with many of the UK’s finest orchestras.

As first violinist of the internationally acclaimed Brodsky Quartet (1999-2007), his work included collaborations with artists ranging from Anne-Sofie von Otter and Alexander Baillie to iconic crossover work with Elvis Costello, Björk, Paul McCartney and Sting. He recorded more than 15 albums with the quartet, many of which won awards such as Diapason d’or and Choc du Monde de la Musique. He has also appeared with numerous other chamber groups, such as the Nash and Hebrides ensembles, the Logos Chamber Group, Kathy Selby, and the Omega Ensemble.

Andrew Haveron is in great demand as a concertmaster and director, and has worked with all the major symphony orchestras in the UK and many others around the world. In 2007 he became concertmaster of the BBC Symphony Orchestra and in 2012 he joined the Philharmonia Orchestra. He also led the World Orchestra for Peace at the request of Valery Gergiev, and he has been the leader of the John Wilson Orchestra since its inception.

Born in London in 1975, Andrew Haveron studied at the Purcell School and the Royal College of Music and in 1996 was the highest British prize winner at the Paganini Competition for the past 50 years. In 2004 he received an honorary doctorate from the University of Kent for his services to music.

Andrew Haveron plays a 1757 Guadagnini violin, generously loaned to the Sydney Symphony Orchestra by Vicki Olsson.