Tickets on sale now for Bryn, Renée, Yuja and many more, plus a Golden Opportunity revealed.

The Melbourne Symphony Orchestra has just announced its program for 2015, and it’s set to be an exciting and eclectic year ahead. Symphony-loving Melbournians will be treated to a vast array of music, including familiar favourites and some rarely heard gems, with an impressive line-up of international soloists and conductors featured as well.

The season will start not with classical music, but with film. Continuing their wildly successful screenings of popular films with live-performed scores, the MSO will present Star Trek, Live in Concert, with music by Michael Giacchino. Later in the year, the Orchestra will present a screening of Babe, with Nigel Westlake’s beloved score conducted by the composer, for the film’s 20th anniversary year.

Film fans will also appreciate the Orchestra being joined by conductor and composer Tan Dun early in February for Chinese New Year celebrations. He’ll be presenting his recent compositions Symphonic Poem on 3 Notes and Nu Shu: The Secret Songs of Women, fresh from the Adelaide OzAsia Festival.

Tan Dun eats with some of the women whose secret language he learned

Welsh baritone superstar Bryn Terfel, who will join the Orchestra and Aussie musical theatre favourite Lisa McCune for a night of Broadway classics. A week later will see Terfel return to the classical world to sing the role of the diabolical Méphistophélès in Berlioz’s fatalistic fantasy, The Damnation of Faust. Another treat lies in store for opera lovers, when Renée Fleming joins the Orchestra for one night only in a performance of Ravel’s Scheherezade, Canteloube’s Chants d’Auvergne and a selection of opera arias.

Star soprano Renée Fleming

Other stars in the 2015 line-up include Chinese pianist Yuja Wang performing Prokofiev, Korean-American violinist Sarah Chang performing the beloved Bruch concerto, and conductor Jakub Hrůša joining the Orchestra for Rimsky-Korsakov’s beguiling Scheherezade.

The MSO’s Chief Conductor Sir Andrew Davis will lead the orchestra in a number of fantastic concerts during the year, including the continuation of the Mahler Cycle (Symphony Nos 3 and 4), as well as a performance of Benjamin Britten’s monumental War Requiem.

The commemoration of the centenary of Australia’s involvement in the First World War includes a very special tribute concert on the eve of Anzac Day, featuring a performance of Beethoven’s testament to the power of human solidarity, the glorious Ninth Symphony, lead by Principal Guest Conductor Diego Matheuz. The soloists for this occasion represent the four nations involved in the Gallipoli conflict: British Soprano Susan Gritton, Australian Mezzo Fiona Campbell, Turkish Tenor Bülent Bezdüz and New Zealand Bass-Baritone Teddy Tahu Rhodes.

Principal Guest Conductor Diego Matheuz

Another thrilling concert on the 2015 programme is the Orchestra’s recreation of the famous 1808 Vienna concert. The original concert saw a slightly overambitious Beethoven program the premier of both his Symphonies Nos 5 and 6, a performance of the Fourth Piano Concerto, the Choral Fantasy, as well as his own improvisations to top it off. This five-hour long concert is not for the feint-hearted, but is sure to be a standout feature of the whole year.

For those with a taste for the new, the Metropolis New Music festival continues next year, with a focus on compositions for film. Another highlight will be the world premiere of Australian composer Iain Grandage’s Dances with Devils, a percussion concerto composed for Australian percussionist, Claire Edwardes.  And if Jazz is your thing, the MSO teaming up with vocal legend Kurt Elling for the Melbourne International Jazz Festival will be an absolute must-see.

This is just a snapshot of what’s on offer for next year. And while picking favourites might be too difficult a task for some, one lucky individual won’t even have to choose. For the first time ever, the MSO, in collaboration with Broadsheet Melbourne, has offered the chance for one concertgoer to see the whole of the MSO’s 2015 season for free. This special all-season pass comes in the form of a Golden Ticket (and like a trip to Willy Wonka’s chocolate factory it sounds like a dream come true). The public have been invited to submit entries online to claim this amazing prize, and the winner is set to be announced today (Thursday October 23).

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