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TMO – Our Story so Far

Under the baton of Founding Artistic Director & Chief Conductor Sarah-Grace Williams, The Metropolitan Orchestra (TMO) is recognised as one of Australia’s most versatile non-government funded orchestras, delivering consistently vibrant first-class experiences.

A not-for-profit registered musical charity, TMO’s remarkable decade of music making boasts more than 500 concerts, national and international tours and several album recordings. The orchestra’s self-produced annual seasons have included a variety of events tailored to different demographics, from their highly acclaimed and regularly sold-out Met Concert and Cushion Concert series to development programs for composers, conductors and performers, plus outreach concerts for newly arrived refugees.

Over the past ten years, an impressive roster of performers have appeared with TMO including internationally renowned artists José Carreras, Dame Kiri Te Kanawa, Sumi Jo, David Helfgott, Elaine Paige, Anthony Warlow, John Farnham, Olivia Newton-John, Teddy Tahu Rhodes, James Morrison, Kate Ceberano, Marina Prior, the Grigoryan Brothers and Todd McKenny.    In high demand as an orchestra-for-hire, TMO has shown their versatility working across numerous genres. Performance highlights include concerts with film (BBC’s Blue Planet and Planet Earth, Doctor Who Symphonic Spectacular, Kingdom Hearts and Final Fantasy), providing mid-field entertainment at the NRL Grand Final, Opera in the Vineyards and sailing the South Pacific annually as resident orchestra aboard Bravo Cruise of the Performing Arts for the past 6 years. Additionally, TMO has been engaged to perform across Australia and New Zealand with numerous touring international artists including 2Cellos, Basement Jaxx, The Piano Guys, Hiphop act Horrorshow, Air Supply and Joy Division.

For a full list of artists TMO has performed with, click here. For the full list of past concerts, click here.

An important focus in The Metropolitan Orchestra’s mission is to support Australian artists – orchestral players, composers, conductors and soloists.  In 2016 TMO launched its inspiring Composer Development Program unearthing new Australian composers, 2017 saw the of launch TMO’s Young Artist Program and in 2018, TMO proudly opened a Conducting Mentorship, for young conductors.  

TMO has commissioned, performed and recorded world premieres by a number of Australian composers including Jim Coyle, Sean O’Boyle, Mark Grandison, Daniel Rojas, Bruce Mathiske, Elena Kats-Chernin, Nigel U’Brihien, Abiko Yusaku, Adrian Hallam, Heather Shannon, Gavin Lockley, Keyna Wilkins and Gumaroy Newman.  TMO has also workshopped new works by Paul Stanhope, Stuart Greenbaum, Matthew Hindson and James Humberstone. 

TMO has performed for several album recordings and in 2017 released their own album ‘The Metropolitan Orchestra – Live at the ABC Centre Sydney’ featuring performances recorded by ABC Classic FM. 

Our Mission

To inspire a love and enjoyment of classical music to a wide range of audiences through accessible, first-class orchestral concert performances and to provide professional performance opportunities to outstanding Australian orchestral musicians, composers and soloists.

Our Accessible Music Plan

Accessibility: Continue to break down the barriers to high quality classical music.

Opportunity: Provide performance opportunities for passionate musicians at the highest levels.

New Work: Develop, promote and perform new Australian works.

Edutainment: (Education/Entertainment) Bring TMO touring professionals into schools to give insight on musicianship and performance.

Regional: Find ways to present quality classical music to regional centres.

Indigenous: Engage young indigenous performers and classical music professionals.