About The Australian World Orchestra Chamber Ensemble



There is no orchestra quite like the Australian World Orchestra, they're a unique and unforgettable experience. Once a year the AWO assembles Australia's finest musicians from the world's great orchestra to present exhilarating classical concerts. In their short history they have won multiple awards and attracted some of the greatest conductors of our time including Sir Simon Rattle, Maestros Zubin Mehta & Riccardo Muti. The AWO delights in presenting chamber music performances focussing on the excellence of Australia’s elite musicians.


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Bernadette Harvey,  Piano

Bernadette is an international soloist and chamber musician, and is currently Senior Lecturer of Piano at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music. She performs annually at the Tucson Winter Chamber Music Festival (USA) and has collaborated with the Tokyo, Shanghai, Jupiter and Pražák Quartets.

Recent CDs include The Sonata Project featuring commissions of new piano sonatas by Australian women composers. The 2019 CD release, Alchemy, on Canadian label, Marquis Classics, in collaboration with the US Jupiter Quartet, has received high praise. 

2020 engagements include solo recitals at Northwestern University and Salem College USA, chamber collaborations in Tucson, Arizona along with her Australian appearances. 


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Francesco (Frank) Celata, Clarinet

Frank graduated from the Victorian College of the Arts in 1987, then studied in Amsterdam with Piet Honingh (Concertgebouw Orchestra) and Siena with Giuseppe Garbarino. In 1991 he was appointed Principal Clarinet with the then Queensland Philharmonic Orchestra.

Frank joined the Sydney Symphony Orchestra in 1993 as Associate Principal Clarinet and has appeared in several solo performances including Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto, Bernstein’s Prelude, Fugue and Riffs, Krommer’s Double Clarinet Concerto with Principal Clarinet Lawrence Dobell, and a concerto written for him by Gordon Kerry.

He has also appeared as soloist with the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra and the Auckland Philharmonia, and on a number of occasions between 2003 and 2009 he appeared with the London Symphony Orchestra as guest Principal Clarinet, performing on international tours and recordings.

Frank's career highlights include recordings with the London Symphony Orchestra, notably a performance of Shostakovich's 5th Symphony conducted by Mtsislav Rostropovich and a live DVD recording of Ravel’s Bolero conducted by Valery Gergiev. 

Frank has performed in several internationally recognised festivals such as Salzburg, the Yehudi Menuhin Festival, and the Olympic Cultural Festival prior to the Athens Olympic Games.

With an enthusiasm for chamber music, Frank established the Sydney Soloists and guided it to becoming  one of Sydney’s leading chamber ensembles.He is also a member of the New Sydney Wind Quintet.

Frank is also a passionate teacher at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, where he is a Lecturer in Clarinet. He is also a member the faculty of the University of Tasmania Conservatorium of Music as Lecturer in Orchestral and Chamber Music.

Frank is the Artistic Director of the Australian International Symphony Orchestra Institute (AISOI) run through the University of Tasmania. He has also given masterclasses at the Shanghai Conservatorium and Trinity College in London.


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 Ben Jacks, Horn

Ben Jacks was born in Hobart in 1975 and, after studying with Heidi Kepper at the University of Western Australia, he travelled overseas, studying with Dale Clevenger and Gail Williams in Chicago, Stefan Dohr in Berlin, Erich Penzel in Cologne and Hector McDonald in Vienna.

He joined the Sydney Symphony Orchestra as Principal Third Horn in 1998 and in 2001 was appointed Principal Horn. In Australia he has also appeared as a guest principal with the Tasmanian, Adelaide, Queensland, West Australian and Melbourne symphony orchestras and the Opera Australia Orchestra. Internationally, he has performed with the period instrument ensemble Academy of Vienna, regularly appears as guest principal with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra and Ensemble Kanazawa in Japan, and in 2017 was invited by Riccardo Muti to perform as guest principal with the Chicago Symphony Orchestra. He has also performed as guest principal with the London Symphony Orchestra since 2014, and in 2018 joined the LSO on tour with Simon Rattle.

In 2003 he played Britten’s Serenade for tenor, horn and strings with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra (also performing the same work with the West Australian Symphony Orchestra). He is a founding member of the Australian Brass Quintet, and maintains a busy schedule as a soloist and chamber musician. His debut recording, Rhapsodie: Fantasie: Poème, conducted by Barry Tuckwell, features previously unrecorded works for horn and orchestra by Jean-Michel Damase.


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Matthew Wilkie, Bassoon

Matthew Wilkie grew up in Canberra and in 1979, after studying at the Queensland Conservatorium of Music, went to Europe, where he ended up staying for 23 years. While studying bassoon in Hanover, Germany with Klaus Thunemann, he was a prize winner at the International Music Competition in Geneva. He has since appeared as soloist with many orchestras, including the Orchestra de la Suisse Romande, Württemberg Chamber Orchestra and Chamber Orchestra of Europe joining the Sydney Symphony Orchestra as Principal Bassoon in 2000.

He has been a member of the COE since 1986, travelling to Europe five times a year, and has worked under such conductors as Claudio Abbado, Nikolaus Harnoncourt, Lorin Maazel, Zubin Meta, Roger Norrington, Yannick Nézet-Séguin and Bernard Haitink. He appears on countless recordings with the COE, many of which have received international awards. His solo and chamber music recordings include concertos by Mozart, Vivaldi and Richard Strauss; the complete wind chamber music of Mozart and Richard Strauss; and six trio sonatas by Zelenka. His 2009 recording of Bach and Telemann sonatas, The Galant Bassoon, was shortlisted for an ARIA award and has been praised internationally. He has also appeared at many international festivals and is a regular guest at the Australian Festival of Chamber Music in Townsville, and is much in demand as a teacher, giving masterclasses in Europe and Japan.

Matthew is a regular performer with the Australian World Orchestra where he has played under the baton of Maestro Zubin Mehta, Sir Simon Rattle and AWO Co-founder, Artistic Director & Chief Conductor Alexander Briger AO. 


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Conall McClure,  Oboe

Conall studied the oboe with David Nuttall at the Australian National University and furthered his studies in Germany with the aid of a German Government scholarship and Queen Elizabeth 2nd Silver Jubilee Trust grant. In 1994 he completed postgraduate studies at the Karlsruhe Hochschule fur Musik under Thomas Indermuhle assisted by Emanuel Abbuhl and Jaques Tys. After freelancing in Germany, Spain, France, Austria and Switzerland he took up the post of Associate Principal oboe with the Australian Opera and Ballet Orchestra in 1997 and has been Principal oboe there since 2005.

In 2015 Conall left the AOBO for two years and during this time played with the Mozarteum Orchestra Salzburg, the Munich Chamber Orchestra, Duisburg Philharmonic, Camerata Salzburg and the Bavarian Radio Orchestra. He also performed chamber music with the Salzburg Orchester Solisten including performances of Mozart’s Oboe Concerto.

Conall teaches at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music and really enjoys fostering the next generation of oboists through teaching and also mentoring them as part of an internship program with Opera Australia. He is currently Principal Oboe with the Opera Australia Orchestra, and his most recent performance with the Australian World Orchestra was for their three-city India tour in 2018 under the baton of Australian World Orchestra Co-Founder, Artistic Director and Chief Conductor Alexander Briger AO.