The Strathfield Symphony Orchestra will celebrate its 50th anniversary with a concert on the weekend dedicated to the community orchestra’s inaugural conductor, the late Richard Gill.

The orchestra, which was founded by Emily Finn in 1969, will pay tribute to the beloved conductor and music educator’s legacy with a gala concert featuring music by Elena Kats-Chernin and Miriam Hyde, as well as Beethoven’s Seventh Symphony. The Beethoven was unfinished business for Gill, who had planned to conduct the symphony in this anniversary concert, before his health declined last year. Conducting the Strathfield Symphony Orchestra in the 1970s, when the orchestra was smaller and struggled with the demands of some of the larger scale repertoire, Gill and the orchestra only presented a single movement of the work.

Richard Gill at the Strathfield Symphony Orchestra’s 10th anniversary in 1979. Photo supplied

“Fifty years ago, it was really hard for the Strathfield Symphony Orchestra to perform the whole symphony,” says Artistic Director Sadaharu Muramatsu, who will conduct the concert. “He wanted to complete one of the Beethoven symphonies he couldn’t do 50 years ago. So this concert for us is very special.”

These days the orchestra is...