The abrupt closure of the Victorian border last week almost threw a giant spanner in the works for the Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra’s return to live music.

When the lockdown was announced some interstate musicians were already in the air, but more importantly soprano Jacqueline Porter, the star of the show, was stuck in Melbourne with her husband and child and no means of getting to the gig.

Jacqueline Porter and ARCO Jacqueline Porter and the Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra. Photo © Robert Catto

The Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra’s General Manager Nicole van Bruggen frantically rang around government agencies and arts contacts for help and information. The hunt was on for sheet music and concert programs were ready to be rewritten in case the program needed to be adapted, when she was granted permission in the nick of time for Porter and her family to  come to Sydney if she isolated while not rehearsing, and it was back to Plan A.

The Australian Romantic & Classical Orchestra was back on the City Recital Hall stage with a flourish...