Australian Chamber Orchestra

Led by Artistic Director Richard Tognetti since 1990, the ACO performs more than 100 concerts each year. Whether performing in Manhattan, New York, or Wollongong, NSW, the ACO is unwavering in its commitment to creating transformative musical experiences.

The Orchestra regularly collaborates with artists and musicians who share its ideology: from Emmanuel Pahud, Steven Isserlis, Dawn Upshaw, Olli Mustonen, Brett Dean and Ivry Gitlis, to Neil Finn, Jonny Greenwood, Barry Humphries and Meow Meow; to visual artists and film makers such as Bill Henson, Shaun Tan, Jon Frank, and Jennifer Peedom, who have co-created unique, hybrid productions for which the ACO has become renowned

Testament to its international reputation, the ACO undertook a three-year residency as International Associate Ensemble at Milton Court in partnership with London’s Barbican Centre from the 2018/19 season. This residency followed on from the success of ACO Artistic Director Richard Tognetti’s time as the Barbican’s first ever Artist-in-Residence at Milton Court Concert Hall.

In addition to its national and international touring schedule, the Orchestra has an active recording program across CD, vinyl and digital formats. Its recordings of Bach’s violin works won three consecutive ARIA Awards. Recent releases include Water | Night Music, the first Australian-produced classical vinyl for two decades, and the ARIA and AACTA award-winning soundtrack, River.


2024/2025 SEASON

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The Ottoman Four Seasons

Celebrating Vivaldi’s masterpiece with an unforgettable journey through Venice and the Middle East.


Vivaldi’s world was a thrilling and spicy place. Boundaries were porous, particularly in Venice where Vivaldi was born and lived. It was one of the great cosmopolitan and entrepreneurial centres of its time.


Exotic goods, knowledge and culture from the Middle East, North Africa and beyond flowed unstoppably into Europe, propelled by the vast reach of the Ottoman Empire.


The Australian Chamber Orchestra is renowned for their innovative collaborations that breathe new life, and new perspectives, into the classics. In The Ottoman Four Seasons, celebrated violinist Richard Tognetti and the ACO will be joined by oud virtuoso Joseph Tawadros and riq master James Tawadros. You’ll hear Vivaldi’s entire masterpiece in all its original glory – Spring, Summer, Autumn and Winter – performed alongside the toe-tapping rhythms and deep soul of Joseph’s own compositions.

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Rhapsody and Revelry: Tchaikovsky, Arvo Pärt and Sufjan Stevens

The Australian Chamber Orchestra has always forged its own path. In this kaleidoscopic celebration of music across three centuries, you’ll experience what makes them “a remarkable band quite like any other” (The Guardian UK). Led by Artistic Director Richard Tognetti, the ACO will traverse music from rich Romanticism to the mysticism and playfulness of contemporary music, all performed with the Orchestra’s unrivalled virtuosity and dynamism.

At the heart of this program stands Tchaikovsky’s soaring Serenade for Strings, a masterpiece that has earned a rightful place as an audience favourite through its irresistible melodies and open-hearted joy.

A different sense of rhapsody is found in the music of Arvo Pärt, whose Fratres is paired with the deeply affecting music of George Walker – dedicated to his grandmother, a formerly enslaved woman.  

Collaborations with composers outside of classical traditions such as Radiohead’s Jonny Greenwood and The National’s Bryce Dessner are a distinctive part of the ACO’s DNA, and in this program the music of American singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens brings his trademark sense of humour and revelry.

Meditation, ecstasy and illumination: expect to find it all in this program showcasing the Australian Chamber Orchestra at its very best.

“Tchaikovsky’s beloved Serenade for Strings was full of shape and nuance, with the ensemble’s infectious personality shining forth throughout … charismatic, expressive, and fresh”


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Mountain - ACO Film Concert

The Australian Chamber Orchestra brings audiences to the highest peaks, the widest vistas, the most expansive skies in this live music film concert featuring a score of Arvo Pärt, Beethoven, Vivaldi, Grieg, and Richard Tognetti. Mountain is majestic meditation on humanity’s fascination with the grandeur and mystery of our highest peaks.

“The Australian Chamber Orchestra is uniformly high-octane, arresting and never ordinary.”

The Australian

Supplementary & Outreach Initiatives

Alongside mainstage orchestral performances, the ACO offers a range of initiatives to foster deeper connections with audiences and add an additional element to a visit from the Orchestra.




The Lark Ascending

Grażyna Bacewicz

'Tabula Rasa'

“The Australian Chamber Orchestra is uniformly high-octane, arresting and never ordinary.”


The Four Seasons

"Radiating irrepressible joy and strong musical magnetism."

-The Age

Sketches of Spain

"This ACO collaboration was one of the musical highlights of my life”

-Sydney Morning Herald

Ilya Gringolts Plays Bruch

"Australian Chamber Orchestra provided a welcome platform for rarities and discoveries.."

-Sydney Morning Herald

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