‘Baroque by Candlelight’ returns to the Armadale Arts Festival 2018

Perth Chamber Orchestra will be returning to St. Matthew’s Church in Armadale on Saturday 12th May, as part of the Armadale Arts Festival.

Children will recount their experiences of living in Baroque times as Perth Chamber Orchestra (PCO) presents their most acclaimed concert to date: “Baroque by Candlelight”

Following a sell-out perform in August 2017 at St. George’s Cathedral, this concert transports patrons back in time, offering an unforgettable evening.

Enhancing your musical experience with a glass of wine and sweet in hand this is just the entrée for a feast of baroque music set to warm the heart in the candle-lit Church.

Intended to offer a unique musical, spiritual and historical experience, the concert will be under the artistic direction of Jessica Gethin, the leadership of virtuoso violinist, Paul Wright, with soprano Prudence Saunders, and solos from Jenny Coleman (trumpet) and nine-year-old Joshua Crestwell on the banjo.

CLICK HERE for tickets!

Perth Symphony Orchestra to perform with Michael Bolton

We are excited to announce that Perth Symphony Orchestra will perform with Michael Bolton as part of his Symphony Tour on 24th June Perth Concert Hall.

Perth Symphony Chief Conductor & Artistic Director Jessica Gethin will not only be conducting at this concert, but will also be joining Michael for the duration of his tour across Australia and New Zealand to conduct. We wish her a fun and exciting journey on tour!

Multiple Grammy award-winning singer, songwriter and social activist, Michael Bolton has announced he will be touring Australia in June 2018. MICHAEL BOLTON SYMPHONY TOUR will feature Michael performing with a full orchestra as he takes fans on a musical journey of the Greatest Hits – those he has released himself and those he has written for others.   

“Its always a joy to tour Australia and I look forward to coming back in June and playing all my greatest hits with a full orchestra.  Its going to be a fun tour and I look forward to seeing you all there,” said Michael Bolton.  

Known for his soulful voice and touching lyrics, Michael will deliver his catalogue of hits accompanied by a specially selected 30 piece orchestra and joined by a soon to be announced special guest.  

Led by Jessica Gethin, the orchestra will deliver the soulful classics with rich grandeur as Michael brings his own energy and passion to make for a truly extraordinary evening. 

Michael Bolton is one of music’s most successful and loved performers.  His songs are some of the best selling songs of all time – “How Can We Be Lovers,” “When A Man Loves A Woman,” “Said I Love You.. But I Lied” and many more. He has covered some great music classics – his version of Otis Redding’s “Sittin’ On The Dock Of The Bay” topped charts acoss the world and is still heard  on radio today.   

Click here for tickets to the Perth show!

Perth Symphony receives glowing review for Ministry of Sound: Orchestrated

We are delighted to have received a glowing 8.5/10 review for our performance with Ministry of Sound: Orchestrated in King’s Park for Mellen Events last month.

Alfred Gorman of Xpress Magazine had the following to say:

“There’s nothing quite like a live orchestra in full flight. Something about the layered tapestry of many instruments in sync, all combining to create a huge sound. The rising strings, the bassy drone of brass, the intricate percussion and delicate melodies dancing over the top.

Conductor Jessica Gethin stood on a platform front-right, back to the crowd, with the orchestra in the palm of her hand, wearing sneakers and tight, black leather pants. This was not your average orchestra.

There was definitely a lot of love in the air. The crowd didn’t want it to end. It took time for the smiling, shell-shocked people to disperse, still basking in the glory of a very special, memorable performance – one that really tugged at the heart strings and evoked a lot of memories. Bravo!”

You can read the full review here.

Groove Terminator, also known as Simon Lewicki, is the creative brains behind Ministry of Sound’s ‘ORCHESTRATED’. He joined Perth Symphony Executive Director Bourby Webster for a podcast about how we planned to blur the boundaries between a dance floor in Ibiza and traditional concert hall. You can listen to the podcast here.

Photo: Duncan Barnes, Mellen Events

Second night added for ‘Signed, Sealed, Delivered’


Perth Symphony Orchestra (PSO) and WAAPA Gospel Choir have announced a second Signed, Sealed, Delivered: The Music of Stevie & Aretha concert at the Astor Theatre on Wednesday, May 30, in addition to the previously announced and close to sold out first show on Thursday, May 31. Tickets to both shows on sale now.  

CLICK HERE for tickets.

Balcony seats only available for Wednesday 30th May as the Stall are booked for a private event, however the show remains exactly the same for both nights.

Board of Directors

We are so grateful for the time, effort and generosity of our Board of Directors.


Maurice graduated in Law in Ireland in 1978 where he practiced for 10 years before coming to Perth in 1988 with his family. In Western Australia he practiced mainly in the areas of Medical Law, Professional Indemnity, Planning and Local Government Law. Maurice was appointed a full time Member of SAT at its inception in January 2005 and in June 2011 he was appointed as a Senior Member.  In addition to his position as Chair of the Perth Symphony Orchestra, Maurice is also currently Chair of the Clinical Ethics Committee at Princess Margaret Hospital and King Edward Memorial Hospital, having previously been the Chair of the Research Ethics Committee for many years. He is also a past board member of Mercycare and a past Member of the Scientific Advisory Committee for the World Health Organisation Collaborating Centre for Research on Children’s Environmental Health. Maurice is an accredited mediator with a particular interest in the role of facilitative dispute resolution generally and the application of ethical decision making in the clinical context.


Bourby has the rare combination of business acumen and music knowledge. A graduate of Oxford University in Music, the Royal College of Music in London in music performance (viola), and the University of Western Australia with an MBA, Bourby is passionate about using her commercial experience to connect audiences with music, and give musicians opportunities to share their talent.

Whilst starting life as a professional musician both in classical and contemporary music (she was a founding member of the UK-based electric String Quartet ‘Bond’ signed to Decca Records) she moved to Australia in 2000 to immerse herself in the corporate world with the aim of learning skills to assist other musicians with their careers. Since 2000 she has worked in marketing for the WA Institute of Sport and the Perth International Arts Festival, completed an MBA for which she was awarded the Charles Harper Prize and Director’s letter for academic achievement, worked in business development for Sustainability Pty. Ltd. eventually taking on the role of National Business Development Manager for MWH Global, a firm of consulting engineers.

In 2008 she left employment to set up North Street Consulting and North Street Music, the former generating income to support the latter. North Street Music founded the Perth Symphony Orchestra which first performed in November 2011. Since that date, the orchestra has performed to well over 100,000 people, paid more than $1 million to musicians in performance fees, and commenced a number of incredible initiatives aimed at reaching the largest number of people and engaging WA’s leading performers and artists. The orchestra has grown to employ five people and seven more contractors in addition to over 140 musicians.

Bourby is on the Committee of the Oxford University Society in WA, and lectures business skills to musicians at the WA Academy of Performing Arts. She is in demand as a producer, presenter and guest speaker.


Joanne Palmer is a chartered accountant.  She was previously an equity Partner at EY and the head of EY’s Financial Accounting Advisory Services team in Perth, working predominantly in the mining sector assisting both multinational companies, mid-caps and junior explorers with technical accounting, regulatory advice and finance function support services.

Prior to her role in EY’s Financial Accounting Advisory Services team, Joanne worked principally in the field of assurance and audit services.  Joanne has over 20 years’ experience providing audit and assurance services on company listings, mergers, acquisitions and takeovers and has significant experience in auditing the operations of mining companies, particularly those that have international operations.


Dr Alec O’Connell commenced as the 7th Headmaster of Scotch College in June 2011. Before taking on the role of Headmaster at Scotch College, Dr O’Connell was the Assistant Director at the Catholic Education Office of WA where he held the portfolio of People and Organisational Services. He graduated as a teacher in 1982 and since graduating has worked across K-Tertiary, including holding a variety of both teaching and administrative positions.

Alec was the foundation Head and CEO of Trinity at the University of WA and held the positions of the Executive Director, Vice Chancellery and Executive of Academic and Student Services at The University of Notre Dame Australia. He was the WA Chairperson and a member of the National Board of the Australian College of Educators.

Alec is a Fellow of the Australian College of Educators, the Australian Institute of Management and the National Association of University Colleges and Halls and a Life Member of Trinity Residential College at the University of Western Australia.

Alec has a Doctor of Business Administration from the University of Western Australia where he investigated the concept of Values Congruence and its effect on Organisational Commitment.  He also holds a Diploma of Teaching, Bachelor and Master of Education, Graduate Diploma of Language Studies and Diploma Royal Society of Arts London.  He has provided a number of guest lectures on the topic of Leadership and Values

He currently is a member of the Board of Kidsafe Western Australia, the UWA Business School Ambassadorial Committee and has recently been appointed to the Forrest Foundation Committee of the University of Western Australia.


Simon had his own financial advisory firm Keysbrook Financial Services from 1995 to 2008. He sold the firm into Shadforth Financial Group in 2008 and stayed on as State Manager of the merged group for 3 years.

After that, Simon formed Aberfoyle Partners in 2011, a small consulting and business development firm.  Aberfoyle Partners has contracts with a few listed companies (including Peet and Co. and Euroz) as well as a number of private firms.

Simon has been involved with the Board of Kidsafe WA for 8 years and currently holds the position of Chairman. He also sits on the Board of Westoz Funds Management and was previously Treasurer of the MS Society of WA for approximately 7 years. Simon has previously been on the Board of Shadforth Financial Group. The group was listed on the ASX prior to be taken over by IOOF Holdings Limited.


Suzanne Ardagh manages the International Division of the Australian Institute of Company Directors, a not-for-profit membership organisation providing leadership on director issues and promoting excellence in governance to achieve a positive impact on the economy and society. It has with over 35,000 members worldwide, including over 1000 international members.

Commencing her career with the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, she completed postings in Vienna and Mexico City. She has worked in corporate affairs, marketing and communications and spent five years in Vietnam working in the international tertiary education sector and served as Chair of the Charitable Committee of the Australian Chamber of Commerce.

Suzanne is on the Board of the Perth International Arts Festival and the Cancer Council (WA) and she is on the Advisory Board of the Asia Business Centre of Curtin University.

Previously Suzanne served on the Board of the contemporary arts organizations IASKA, and Musica Viva. She was also on the board of the international NGO, Opportunity International, a mico-finance provider to solutions to impoverished communities in South East Asia, and Ready to Work – a not-for-profit organisation which helps disadvantaged women re-engage in the workforce.



Born in Ireland, I grew up with a massive interest in arts and culture; my passion for music has often been at the forefront of my hobbies. As a Director of Donald Cant Watts Corke, and a member of their senior leadership team in Western Australia, I am reminded on a daily basis of the challenges that exist in society – particularly through my work in strategic planning and management. With a breadth of experience around inspiring stakeholders and overseeing complex projects as part of my professional career, it will be a rewarding change to utilise these skills to assist the Perth Symphony Orchestra (PSO) at the Board level.

Through my career experience and unique breadth of skills, I hope to be a valuable member of the PSO Board, and help our state’s best classical music group take their success into the next decade and beyond. I love the challenge of creative problem solving, design thinking, and collaboration with our teams to deliver successful outcomes and replenish communities.

Johannes Luebbers – arranger for ‘Faith & Freedom: The Music of George Michael’

We were delighted to collaborate with one of Australia’s most interesting young composers, Johannes Luebbers, to write charts for our recent Faith & Freedom: The Music of George Michael shows. We invited him over to Perth to conduct the concert when we performed for the 10,000+ people at ‘South Perth Sounds’ in February.

Executive Director Bourby Webster interviewed Johannes last month shortly before the show – you can listen to the podcast here or via your favourite podcast app.

Winner of the 2011 ‘Young Australian Jazz Artist of the Year’ (Australian Jazz ‘Bell’ Awards) and the 2011 ‘Jazz Work of the Year’ (APRA/AMC Art Music Awards), Johannes Luebbers has established himself as one of Australia’s leading jazz composers. Graduating from WAAPA in 2006, Luebbers studied arranging with Graeme Lyall. He has been the recipient of numerous other awards, and has also released two albums with the Johannes Luebbers Dectet (JLD), which was established in 2007.

You can listen to some of his compositions here.

Perth Symphony began the podcast series ‘Music on the Move’ in 2017. Now up to its 10th episode, the podcast has seen us gain insight through interviewing inspiring contributors such as Justin Burford, Ros Appleby, Paul Wright and Gordon Hamilton.

Perth Symphony collaborates with 12 Buckets for raffle!

We were delighted to partner with 12 Buckets once again this year to fundraise through our raffle at Music at Murdoch. 12 Buckets provided a wonderful team of people to sell raffle tickets for us this year.

12 Buckets has grown from being an Unincorporated Association where a few friends banded together to offer their time, skills and abilities to a local Perth Primary School to becoming a highly regarded and formally recognised children’s charity.

At no charge to schools and without Government funding, 12 Buckets delivers its first-class One-to One Mentoring Program, Basketball Program, Debating Program, University Aspiration Program to four primary schools in Perth’s northern suburbs.

We look forward to many more partnerships with 12 Buckets!  Thank you to Murdoch University for allowing us to fundraise at Music @ Murdoch this again this year. We so appreciate your ongoing support.

Murdoch University is well known locally for supporting local charities and organisations. They raise significant amounts for Telethon by hosting the Telethon Community Cinemas each year on their beautiful South Street campus.

PSO welcomes Natalie Oakes, Executive Support

We are delighted to welcome another new staff member to the Perth Symphony team – Natalie Oakes has joined us as Executive Support, aiding PSO Executive Director Bourby Webster and General Manager Tina Nguyen with administration and organisational support.  It truly is so exciting to see our admin team grow as a reflection of PSO’s ever expanding schedule and demand across Perth and WA.

We asked her a few questions about joining PSO:

What do you love about PSO?
I love the range of audiences they appeal to and the absolute absence of boundaries when it comes to what music they play. As cliché as it sounds there honestly is a little something from everyone in the program. The level of care PSO has for everyone they work with clients, musicians, sponsors and staff – is brilliant, definitely a benefit of not operating as a huge corporate company!

What is your personal connection to music?
I grew up listening to the likes of Michael Jackson, Stevie Wonder and Lionel Richie. My mum likes to think the reason I’m pursuing dancing professionally now is because she played music so often while she was pregnant with me! As a dancer music is a HUGE part of my life!

What was the last concert you attended?
George Maple – incredible Australian female artist.

What music are you currently listening to a lot?
BIG BAND MUSIC! Currently rehearsing a routine to Benny Goodman’s Sing Sing Sing so listening to this on repeat, anything with brass interments just puts me in a good mood.

We’re very glad to have Natalie on board to provide our team with valuable support!

Perth Symphony visits schools in Rockingham

We were thrilled to be invited by the City of Rockingham to return to primary schools in the Rockingham area with our noisy, interactive, fun incursions. We have visited four schools so far and are really excited to be visiting many more over the next few weeks. By the end of April, we will have reached 5,500+ Primary school children and 100+ high school kids in the local area.

Our percussion, brass, string and mixed (strings with woodwind) ensembles are ready to make lots of happy memories with these lovely kids. Pictured above are some of the great kids at Baldivis Primary who we visited on the 14th of March.

Thanks again to the City of Rockingham for this opportunity, and to the school staff for being so welcoming.

PSO welcomes new General Manager, Tina Nguyen!

We are excited to have welcomed a new staff member – Tina Nguyen, who is joining us as General Manager. Tina brings a wealth of experience to PSO, and has previously worked for Johnson & Johnson, the WA Vietnam Business Council and Spinifex Consulting. We asked her a few questions about music and working at PSO!

What do you love about PSO?
THE DIFFERENCE! I like PSO as it is a young cultural organisation, committed to making a difference in Western Australia. Perth Symphony is a unique orchestra which aims to provide ‘Music for Everyone’ through their innovative approach, and I am so pleased to be a part of it.

What is your personal connection to music?
Since I was small, I have always loved listening to music, all types of music. I lived in a small mountainous village where we could never afford to watch live music. We as young kids always loved to play music on boxes, food cans, or saucepans – anything that could make noise! We pretended we were a band, and it was so much fun! I still remember my mother telling me that when it got dark, sometimes a village musician would walk around the village and play traditional songs on the flute. He would bring music to every home, but unfortunately I never got to see him, maybe I was sent to bed too early!

What was the last concert you attended?
My husband bought me and our children tickets to listen to Andre Rieu in Perth. That is probably the first and greatest one I have ever been to.

What music are you currently listening to a lot?
I like the contemporary Pop and Rock songs coming from young artists at the moment, but I also like listening to classical pieces too! 

We’re very happy to have Tina on board, and can’t wait to see what she brings to PSO!