Blog / Emerging Artists Program 2017

Emerging Artists Program 2017

Posted on 11 Jan 2016 by Cristina Maldonado


Pekka Kuusisto. Photo credit Kaapo Kamu

This year Pekka Kuusisto, one of the most distinctive musicians working today, takes up the position of inaugural ACO Collective Artistic Director. The Orchestra, led by Kuusisto, opens our 2016 National Subscription season with Beethoven & The 21st Century tour.

The ACO's Emerging Artists Program connects the next generation of talented young Australian string players with members of the ACO. As a small, permanent ensemble, the ACO is uniquely positioned to offer young musicians the opportunity to rehearse and perform with its renowned players in an ongoing mentoring situation over an annual concert season. Kuusisto's appointment represents a great mentoring opportunity for Australian young musicians.

It is a testament to the program's success that former Emerging Artists Rebecca Chan, Madeleine Boud, Liisa Pallandi and Glenn Christensen have been appointed members of the ACO. 

The past few years have been exciting for former and future EAs.

In 2014, Anne-Marie Johnson (2013 EA) was awarded the 2014 Dorcas McClean Travelling Scholarship of $40,000. Doretta Balkizas, another 2013 former Emerging Artist, was a finalist in the same competition. The prize enables the winner to undertake further studies overseas, and the opportunity to record and perform with the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra.


Talented violinist Anne-Marie Johnson has been awarded the 2014 Dorcas McClean Travelling Scholarship.

Last year, former Emerging Artist Zoe Freisberg (2014 EA) won the Australian Youth Classical Music Competition's first prize and a $10,000 Travel Scholarship;

Harry Bennetts (2015 EA) won the first prize in ANAM's Concerto Competition and first prize and audience prize at the Kendall National Violin Competition. Nicholas Waters (2016 EA) won the Bach Prize at the Kendall National Violin Competition.


Zoe Freisberg, Harry Bennetts and Nicholas Waters. Photo courtesy Affinity Collective.

Also in 2015, Cameron Hill (2008 EA) was awarded the position of Associate Concertmaster with the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and Katie Yap (2014 EA) was awarded the position of Associate Principal Viola with Orchestra Victoria. Hugh Kluger (2014 EA) was awarded the position of Associate Principal Double Bass with Adelaide Symphony Orchestra and Benjamin Caddy (2013 EA) won a viola position with West Australian Symphony Orchestra.

In 2016, the ACO’s Emerging Artists will travel to regional Western Australia under the direction of Pekka Kuusisto, as well as regional New South Wales directed by special guests, the celebrated Finnish string quartet, Meta4.


EDUCATION | Emerging Artists Program 2017 Applications
Deadline for applications is Fri 1 April 2016. 

PEKKA KUUSISTO & ACO COLLECTIVE | BEETHOVEN & THE 21ST CENTURY

4-19 February
Adelaide, Brisbane, Canberra, Melbourne, Newcastle, Sydney

NICO MUHLY (arr. strings) Part I from Drones & Violin
ERKKI-SVEN TÜÜR Action–Passion–Illusion
TIPPETT A Lament from Variations on an Elizabethan Theme
BRYCE DESSNER (arr. strings) Tenebre
SIBELIUS Rakastava
BEETHOVEN (arr. strings) String Quartet in F minor, Op.95 ‘Serioso’

MORE INFO