Samuel Cairnduff,  Director Marketing and Communications

There’s Bach, Beethoven, Broadway and more in the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra’s 2019 season, which goes on general sale to the public Thursday 6 December.


The TSO welcomes sensational soloists appearing with the orchestra for the first time – among them dynamo violinists Benjamin Beilman and Stefan Jackiw – and welcomes back Nina Stemme, the world’s No 1 Wagner soprano and star of the TSO’s Helpmann Award-winning Tristan and Isolde in 2016. Nina Stemme’s TSO appearance will be her only Australian engagement in 2019.


While no single theme is traced throughout the year, ‘Great Violin Concertos’ emerges as a sub-theme in the first half of the season. Within the space of a few months, concert-goers will have the opportunity to hear three of the most beloved violin concertos in the repertoire, commencing with the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with soloist Benjamin Beilman on 8 March (Hobart), the Sibelius Violin Concerto with soloist Simone Lamsma on 12 April (Hobart) and the Brahms Violin Concerto with soloist Stefan Jackiw on 3 and 4 May (Hobart and Burnie).


The March-May period also includes Mozart’s Violin Concerto No 5 (often known as the ‘Turkish’) with soloist Richard Tognetti on 1 and 2 March (Hobart and Launceston), and Britten’s hauntingly beautiful Violin Concerto with soloist Emma McGrath, TSO Concertmaster, on 11 May (Hobart).


Of particular interest is Beethoven’s famous and much loved Violin Concerto heard in its rarely performed but wholly authentic transcription for piano and orchestra. Howard Shelley will appear as soloist and direct the orchestra from the keyboard on 17 and 18 May (Hobart and Launceston).


Quite apart from the violin, the 2019 season includes some of the best loved concertos for other instruments, such as Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto with soloist Andrew Seymour, TSO Principal Clarinet, on 2 and 3 August (Hobart and Launceston), Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue with pianist Louis Schwizgebel on 11 October (Hobart) and Rachmaninov’s Piano Concerto No 2 with soloist Alexander Gavrylyuk on 6 December (Hobart).


The TSO’s commitment to Australian performers remains as strong as ever. In addition to Richard Tognetti, Emma McGrath and Andrew Seymour, the 2019 season showcases soprano Nicole Car, performing Mozart arias on 15 August (Hobart), and saxophonist Amy Dickson, premièring Matthew Hindson’s Saxophone Concerto on 25 August (Hobart). The Hindson concerto is a TSO commission.


A highlight of the year for opera lovers and Wagner fans is the return of dramatic soprano Nina Stemme. Together with fellow Swede John Lundgren, Nina Stemme stars in an all-Wagner gala conducted by Marko Letonja on 2 November (Hobart). Consisting mainly of excerpts from the Ring, the concert includes Wotan’s Farewell from Die Walküre and the Immolation Scene from Götterdämmerung. Nina Stemme’s award-winning debut with the TSO in 2016, which has gone down in the annals of concert history, attracted concert-goers from interstate and overseas.


Eivind Aadland, the TSO’s Chief Conductor and Artistic Director Designate, conducts a concert on 9 August (Hobart) featuring Sibelius’ Symphony No 5, which hasn’t been heard in Tasmania for more than 30 years, along with Beethoven’s Piano Concerto No 3 with acclaimed Spanish pianist Javier Perianes.


The TSO is delighted to welcome English conductor, choral director and Baroque specialist Stephen Layton conducting a performance of Bach’s St John Passion on 6 April (Hobart) with a specially selected cast of singers who have worked closely with him in the United Kingdom.


As in previous seasons, there will be three Family Classics concerts in Hobart, and the TSO will perform Peter and the Wolf in Launceston (14 March) and Scottsdale (15 March) in concerts specially designated for families and children.


Lovers of classic Broadway shows of the 1940s and 50s can look forward to The Best of Rodgers and Hammerstein featuring stars of London’s West End on 4 and 6 July (Hobart and Launceston).


The TSO’s extremely popular RACT Symphony under the Stars, free outdoor concerts in Hobart and Launceston, will take place on 16 February (Hobart) and 23 February (Launceston). For the first time, the Hobart concert will be in the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens. The Launceston concert remains in City Park. Concert-goers are advised that these will be ticketed events in 2019. Tickets, which are free, will be available at the TSO website and through the TSO Box Office from 6 December 2018.


The TSO’s 2019 season is on sale from Thursday 6 December. Visit or call 1800 001 190 for more information.