This program of orchestral favourites is QSO’s first for the year, opening their concert series. Last year, like most ensembles, they were unable to perform together due to COVID-19, and instead were forced to turn to the internet to try and keep some semblance of normality. Their Orchestra Over the Fence series, for instance, spotlighted some seriously unusual instrumental combinations and great, rarely-heard repertoire, and it’s well worth looking back over their YouTube channel to see some terrific gems and excellent chamber performances. So, as their return to regular concert life, it’s hard not to feel that there were some expectations going in to this performance.

Conductor Dane Lam and the Queensland Symphony Orchestra at the QSO Favourites concert. Photo © Peter Wallis

This concert was perhaps a little conventional in terms of programming, but it’s nonetheless a refreshing return to business as usual for QSO. The theme for the concert was simply that of orchestral favourites (although there’s also a subtle thread of dance running throughout several of these pieces), so it was no surprise to see some of the usual...