Tag Archives: Alexander Briger


I managed to contact Alexander Briger the day before he flies to Melbourne for the final preparations with the Australian World Orchestra and their concerts in Melbourne, Canberra and Sydney.

Australian World Orchestra you may ask?  It’s not a new idea, admits Briger, there are other orchestras based on a similar format.  There’s Claudio Abbado’s Lucerne Festival Orchestra, which Briger much admires and there’s Ivan Fischer’s Budapest Festival Orchestra.  But unlike the Australian version they’re made up of leading European players who do not have a country as a common denominator. The difference with The Australian World Orchestra is that 50% of the players are ex-pat Australians in top orchestral positions abroad and the rest command leading positions in Australian orchestras.  

The germ of the idea came to Briger in 2006 while conducting the AWO’s Japanese equivalent in Tokyo; they comprised only Japanese players based in Japan.  Briger’s brainchild was more ambitious. But how to do it? He contacted uncle (the late) Charles Mackerras who liked the idea and suggested they perform Beethoven’s 9th in their opening concert.  First player to be sounded out was Nick Deutsch, oboe-player extraordinaire for the Leipzig Gewandhaus and other famous orchestras. He bubbled with enthusiasm; other ex-pats were approached and they all wanted to be part of it.   Continue reading ALEXANDER BRIGER AND THE AUSTRALIAN WORLD ORCHESTRA


Inset pic- Ela Ray Marstein who plays Terynka. Featured pic-
Inset pic- Ela Ray Marstein who plays Terynka. Production photography by John Kilkeary

Czech composer, musical theorist and folklorist Leos Janácek’s (1854-1928) THE CUNNING LITTLE VIXEN, first performed in 1924, features a huge, lush, romantic  score.

This work  tells the story of a beautiful, glorious vixen and the Forester who tries to tame and contain her.

Pacific Opera ‘s current impressive revival, performed in English, sees Michael Campbell directing with the very accomplished Alexander Briger conducting an outstanding Sydney Youth Orchestra. Continue reading THE CUNNING LITTLE VIXEN @ THE NEW HALL SYDNEY GRAMMAR SCHOOL DARLINGHURST


Second Image

Another tremendous concert by the Willoughby Symphony Orchestra. MAJESTIC MOZART was triumphant and thrilling, with the audience enthusiastically screaming bravo at the end .

Under the umbrella title ‘Majestic Mozart’ this time the conductor was maestro Alexander Briger who led the orchestra with a controlled, finicky yet delicate and precise touch.

First up was Ravel’s ‘Le Tombeau de Couperin’ , here in the 1919 four movements for  orchestra version ,which had almost a fairytale pastoral feel to it with possible Debussy influences . The work was given a luminous performance of delicate poise.

Continue reading MAJESTIC MOZART