Christchurch Symphony Orchestra
Christchurch Symphony Orchestra had its origins in the John Ritchie Strings formed in 1958. The Christchurch Symphony Orchestra Incorporated was formed in 1975. It is now managed by a Trust, governed by a Board of Trustees, and it is registered for charitable purposes.
Christchurch Symphony Orchestra is the South Island's major professional orchestra, retaining tenured players. It employs a Chief Executive and five other full-time staff, who are assisted by other part-time staff in specific roles.
The orchestra, itself, comprises of 39 tenured players, augmented by up to another eighty part-time professionals, who are hired as required for specific performances. Current tenured players
Its Concertmaster, Jan van den Berg, formerly played in both the Hong Kong Philharmonic and the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra and has been with the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra for ten years.
Sir William Southgate, formerly the orchestra's Principal Guest Conductor, has been awarded the esteemed rank of Conductor Laureate.
In 2002, the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra appointed its first Music Director, Marc Taddei, to oversee the programming and artistic development of the orchestra. Christchurch Symphony Orchestra has appointed Tom Woods as Principal Conductor for 2008/2009.
Soundly governed, managed and musically focussed, the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra has recently made rapid strides in the quality of its performances, well received by critics, audiences, sponsors and funders alike.
Between 25 and 75 players are used for each concert, which typically involves 4 - 5 evening / weekend rehearsals, and a Saturday night performance in the Christchurch Town Hall Auditorium, which has a capacity of almost 2200.
Both New Zealand and international artists are commissioned as soloists and conductors to augment the regular appearances as conductor of the Principal Conductor and Conductor Laureate.
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