Sydney Philharmonia Choirs
Bringing together a community of voices - young and old
Sydney Philharmonia Choirs presents the art of choral singing at the highest standard, and develops the talents of those with a passion for singing, in Sydney and beyond. Founded in 1920, it has become Australia’s finest choral organisation and is a Resident Company of the Sydney Opera House.
Led by Music Director Brett Weymark OAM since 2003, SPC comprises of three auditioned and three community choirs that perform a range of repertoire from choral classics to musical theatre and commissions by Australian composers. Sydney Philharmonia Choirs presents its own season of concerts with leading conductors, soloists and orchestras. In 2002, SPC was the first Australian choir to sing at the BBC Proms (Mahler’s Symphony No.8 under Sir Simon Rattle), returning again in 2010 to celebrate the Choirs’ 90th anniversary. The choirs perform in the Sydney Symphony Orchestra’s season every year as they have done for more than 80 years. Sydney Philharmonia Choirs also presents a series of community singing events throughout the year – Chorus Oz (our annual big sing), PopUp Sing and singing workshops throughout Sydney and regional NSW.
In 2020, Sydney Philharmonia Choirs celebrated 100 years. Despite the restrictions on live performances in that year, it pressed ahead with a commissioning project – 100 Minutes of New Australian Music – featuring composers Brett Dean, Elena Kats-Chernin and Deborah Cheetham, among others. 2021 saw a cautious but bold return to live choral performances and will return to the Sydney Opera House Concert Hall to perform in 2022.
Louise Herron AM, Sydney Opera House CEO
There is nothing quite like it, seeing and feeling the exhilaration of hundreds of voices singing with precision and vibrancy...
Artistic and Music Director Brett Weymark
Brett Weymark is one of Australia’s foremost choral conductors. Since 2003 Brett Weymark has conducted the Sydney Philharmonia Choirs throughout Australia and internationally. He has also conducted the Sydney, Adelaide, Queensland, West Australian and Tasmanian symphony orchestras, Orchestra of the Antipodes, Sydney Youth Orchestra, New Zealand Symphony Orchestra, Hong Kong Philharmonic and productions for WAAPA, Pacific Opera and OzOpera. He has performed with Opera Australia, Pinchgut Opera, Australian Chamber Orchestra, The Song Company and Musica Viva.
He studied singing and conducting at Sydney University and the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and continued conducting studies with Simon Halsey, Vance George, Daniel Barenboim and Sir John Eliot Gardiner, amongst others.
His performances have included Bach’s Passions and Christmas Oratorio, the requiems of Mozart, Verdi, Duruflé and Fauré and Orff’s Carmina Burana. He is champion of Australian composers and has premiered works by Matthew Hindson, Elena Kats-Chernin, Peter Sculthorpe, Ross Edwards and many others. He has prepared choirs for Sir Charles Mackerras, Zubin Mehta, Edo de Waart, Vladimir Ashkenazy and Sir Simon Rattle. He has recorded widely for the ABC and conducted film scores, including Happy Feet, Mad Max Fury Road and Australia.
Recent highlight performances include Sondheim’s Sweeney Todd (West Australian Opera), Paul Stanhope’s Jandamarra (SSO), Michael Tippett’s A Child Of Our Time (Adelaide Festival) and Carousel (Adelaide State Opera).
In 2001, he was awarded an Australian Centenary Medal. In 2021, Brett was awarded the Medal of the Order of Australia for services to the performing arts through music.
Brett is passionate about singing and the role that music plays in both the individual's wellbeing and the overall health and vitality of a community’s culture. Music can transform lives and should be accessible to all.