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Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra to Launch Australian Debut Tour, Nov-Dec 2013

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From 21 November to 1 December 2013, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra with Chief Conductor Mariss Jansons will present concerts in Perth, Brisbane, Melbourne and Sydney.

In December 2008, a group of international critics invited by Gramophone ranked the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra (RCO) as the best symphony orchestra in the world. This year, the RCO celebrates 125 years of concerts with a world tour visiting six continents in a single year - the very first orchestra ever to do so. Now, for the first time, Australian audiences will have the opportunity to experience the unique quality and beauty of this brilliant orchestra.

Soon after its establishment in Amsterdam in 1888, the RCO developed into one of the leading orchestras in Europe. The character of the orchestra has been shaped by longstanding relationships with each of its chief conductors - numbering only six in total during its 124?year history. A wide variety of composers such as Strauss, Mahler, Debussy and Stravinsky frequently conducted the Concertgebouw Orchestra and the orchestra enjoyed a close relationship with Gustav Mahler and championed many of his symphonies. In 1988 the orchestra was granted Royal status.

RCO Chief Conductor Mariss Jansons ranks among the most outstanding symphony conductors of our time. His orchestral work is widely recognised through his extensive touring activities, world?wide television and radio broadcasts and many lauded recordings. Jansons has been awarded a number of international prizes and accolades and he is an honorary member of the Gesellschaft der Musikfreunde in Vienna and the Royal Academy in London.

The concerts by the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra are the latest in the World Orchestras Program. For Sydney Opera House and Perth Concert Hall, these concerts form a centrepiece for both organisations' 40th anniversary celebrations in 2013. Queensland Performing Arts Centre celebrates the return of the series, while 2013 marks the first time Arts Centre Melbourne is part of the tour. Previous international orchestras to tour Australia include the Vienna Philharmonic with Valery Gergiev in 2006, the Israel Philharmonic with Zubin Mehta in 2008, the London Philharmonic with Vladimir Jurowski in 2009, the Berlin Philharmonic with Sir Simon Rattle in 2010 and a return visit by the Vienna Philharmonic in 2011 with Christoph Eschenbach.

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