As part of South Australia’s History Festival, former Adelaide Symphony Orchestra musician Paul Blackman will present an illustrated tour through the ASO’s 80 years. For The Adelaide Review, Blackman guides us through some historical images from the ASO’s archives.
Guido Giacchino “Guido Giacchino was the cello player when the ASO was formed in 1936. In his native Italy, he was a keen skier until on one occasion, he picked the wrong slope and ended up at the bottom of a cliff with many broken bones. After six months in rehabilitation, he decided on a career in music having studied the cello to an advanced level. He came out to Australia and it was not long before he was playing in the Theatre Orchestra at Wests Theatre, on the very site currently occupied by the ASO’s Grainger Studio. When the ABC took over 5CL radio station, he played in a trio before winning the cello position in the core ensemble that was the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra.” 1936 Augmented Orchestra “William Cade was the first conductor of the orchestra serving from 1936 until 1948. Growing up and studying violin in Adelaide, he then worked at the Regent Theatres in Adelaide, Melbourne and Sydney before he was appointed Resident Conductor of the ASO. In 1936 the orchestra consisted of a core of fifteen permanent musicians to play music for the radio. They would also usually perform six public performances per year when they would be augmented with casual musicians up to an ensemble of forty to 50 players.” TV 1960 “ABC TV came to Adelaide in 1960 and the SASO was soon to feature in South Australian living rooms. This photo shows the percussion section with Bevan Bird (L) and Richard Smith (R) in the foreground. These two musicians would separately lead the percussion section for a combined period of some 65 years starting when the ASO was first formed.” Henry Krips “Henry Krips was the orchestra’s longest serving conductor. He became Resident Conductor soon after the orchestra was reformed and renamed in 1949 and retired in 1972. Under a new funding agreement between the State Government, the Adelaide City Council, the South Australian Orchestral Association Inc and the ABC, which required the orchestra to serve the community of South Australia, Henry Krips became a well-known figure leading the orchestra. Regular public and school concerts were performed all around the state. As well as concerts in Adelaide and Mount Gambier, the orchestra visited many small towns including Tumby Bay, Yorketown, Mannum and Penola on a regular basis.” Darwin visit “The orchestra’s first tour to Darwin occurred in 1967. On the way, the orchestra stopped off at Alice Springs and school students were bussed in from many outlying areas for the unique experience of hearing a live symphony orchestra playing at a school’s concert.” School concerts “Cyril Britten tuba player with the orchestra in the late 1960s is seen here as centre of attraction for a young group of students at one of the many schools concerts given during that period.” ASO 80 Years Young: A History Festival Event presented by Paul Blackman Grainger Studio Monday, May 2, 11am aso.com.au