Our Next Major Concert
In The Concourse
Handel's reputation—and that of his Messiah—only continues to grow. Even Mozart confessed himself to be humble in the face of Handel's genius. "Handel knows better than any of us what will make an effect," Mozart said. "When he chooses, he strikes like a thunderbolt."
The Killara Music Club will perform this masterpiece with Willoughby Symphony Choir.
Monday 27 November 2017, 7.30pm
Ravenswood Auditorium, Gordon
Rossini's Stabat Mater is powerful and resolute, lighting a path towards the "Glory of Heaven" which is magnificently revealed in the Finalé. Replete with gorgeous vocal solos and profound choral and orchestral writing, this work presented a wonderful opportunity for the Ku-ring-gai Philharmonic Orchestra to join forces in a performance with the Willoughby Symphony Choir and a fine quartet of soloists under the baton of Peter Ellis.
In his Pulcinella Suite, Stravinsky presents a witty neoclassical take on the music of Pergolesi and his contemporaries.
Saturday 4 November 2017, 7.30pm
The Concourse Concert Hall
The Willoughby Symphony's ever-popular Last Night of the Proms. The cheering crowds had a night of unbridled enthusiasm as the full Orchestra and Choir combined in a massive concert performance of beloved symphonic and choral masterworks.
Saturday 19 August 2017, 7pm
Sunday 20 August 2017, 2pm
The Concourse Concert Hall
Brahms German Requiem
Brahms’ greatest and most frequently performed choral work, completed in 1866, has proved to be universally popular.
The Willoughby Symphony Choir, one of the finest community choirs in Australia, presented this work in a spine-tingling and exciting performance with a large orchestra and soloists, under the baton of Peter Ellis.
The work does not follow the traditional text and form of the Requiem Mass but instead has been set to selected passages from the Lutheran Bible. Hopes, fears and resurrection are emphasised rather than church-based spirituality, faith and judgement.
2pm Sunday 23 July 2017
There was a pre-concert talk at 1pm
Saint Nicolas Cantata by Benjamin Britten
The Cantata is based on the life of St Nicolas, a fourth century Christian saint and Greek Bishop of Myra in Asia minor. He was known as a worker of wonders and is thought to be the model for the modern Santa Claus. The Cantata, written by Benjamin Britten in 1948, uses text by Eric Crozier, and was first performed in the same year at the Aldeburgh Festival. It tells the dramatic stories of the life of the saint, with each of the nine scenes describing a different episode in Nicolas’s life.
Also on the program:
Mozart’s Ave Verum Corpus, Bruckner's Locus Iste, Mozart's Laudate Dominum
TENOR: Ryan O’Donnell
3pm Sunday 23 April 2017
Pre-concert talk at 2.15pm
Zenith Theatre, Chatswood
The Magic of Christmas
Under the baton of celebrated Australian conductor, Michelle Leonard, the full Willoughby Symphony Orchestra and Choir joined forces with the Leichhardt Espresso Chorus and a special Children’s Choir in a colossal performance that delighted audiences of all ages.
Saturday 10 December 2016, 7pm
The audience revelled in the unforgettable melodies and glorious harmonies of an expanded Willoughby Symphony Orchestra and Choir as they performed Beethoven's monumental 9th Symphony, the remarkable work based on Schiller's extraordinary Ode to Joy that changed the course of music history.
The performers were joined by a host of guest soloists in an illustrious end to the 2016 subscription season.
Also in this concert, Willoughby Symphony's own Chief Conductor and Artistic Director, Dr Nicholas Milton, joined acclaimed Australian pianist Kathy Selby AM onstage to perform Mozart's ever-popular A major Piano Concerto. Having performed for eight years together in the legendary Macquarie Trio, this was a musical reunion not to be missed!
Dr Nicholas Milton: Conductor
Kathryn Selby: Piano
Willoughby Symphony Choir
Joined by surprise guest soloists
Brahms Academic Festival Overture
Mozart Piano Concerto in A major, K. 488
Beethoven Symphony No. 9 in D minor, op.125
Saturday 29 October 2016, 7pm
Sunday 30 October 2016, 2pm
The Concourse Concert Hall
Last Night of the Proms
Sunday 21 August 2016, 2pm
Willoughby Symphony Choir and Orchestra conducted by Peter Ellis in July 2016 presented a concert of translucent beauty, pointing towards the longing of humanity for peace. The concert opened with the wonderful Fauré’s Requiem. Fauré wrote: "my Requiem is dominated from beginning to end by a very human feeling of faith in eternal rest."
The concert also featured Norwegian composer Ola Gjeilo's recent masterpiece Sunrise Mass, a warm and understated prayer for peace. The music of the Sunrise Mass is a journey, from dark and dreamlike floating in the heavens, becoming more emotional and dramatic, and eventually warm and grounded in a place of absolute peace, tranquility and relief, at one with humanity and the Earth.
Review by Lynne Lancaster, Sydney Arts Guide in May 2016
This spectacular, magnificent performance of Mendelssohn’s ELIJAH almost lifted the roof off and set the concert hall at the Concourse alight. Under the enthusiastic, energetic baton of Maestro Peter Ellis Willoughby Symphony and Willoughby Choir combined for a thrilling oratorio. It was at times rather overwhelming.
The Choir, a major participant as prophets of Baal, the assorted rabble and more, surged and swelled thunderously at various points with terrific, electric timing and phrasing, as led by Ellis. There was a consistent round full sound with nuanced shading. The Willoughby Symphony Choir was able to provide a delightful mixed double quartet and a high quality angelic trio. The prayers to Baal choruses vibrantly rang out and the following capture and slaying of the false priests was tumultuous and threatening. When they begged for rain we could feel their distress and the shimmering yet dull atmospheric brass, and iron as written in the lyrics. This was a very exciting concert that, at times, gave me goosebumps.