The last 47 years has seen the remarkable transformation of the ACO from a small group of passionate musicians rehearsing above a shop in Kings Cross, to the international orchestra you know and love today. With the help of our incredible audiences and supporters, we’ve grown into a world-renowned ensemble, and our commitment to collaboration, creating new work and cultivating new talent has earned us a singular place in Australia’s cultural landscape. Throughout the decades, including the last two in underground premises in Circular Quay, we’ve dreamed of a permanent home, a place where great music is not just created and performed but truly shared – with everyone.   

The ACO’s new home at Pier 2/3 in Sydney’s Walsh Bay Arts Precinct is the culmination of this dream. It’s the kind of space that throws the doors of possibility wide open, inviting collaboration, outreach, and innovation on a whole new level.

The ACO’s new spaces include:

The Neilson: a flexible and intimate performance space capable of being used with raked retractable seating or in flat floor mode, engineered for classical, acoustic and amplified music, as well as talks, recordings and large workshops. 

The Studio: a flexible space for intimate performances, music rehearsals, workshops, recordings, masterclasses, talks and presentations. 

Our dream has become a reality, but we still need your help to fully realise this once-in-a-lifetime project. 

We invite you to join us by dedicating a seat – a Musical Chair – in the ACO’s new home. For the first time in our history, we are able to offer you the opportunity of dedicating a chair in someone’s name. It could be named after you, your child, grandchild, parent or loved one. It could be used to mark a special occasion or anniversary. It could simply be a special gift for someone close to you. With a tax-deductible donation, your contribution to our future will be acknowledged with an engraved plaque on the back of the seat of your choice for the next ten years.

Musical Chair options:

  • Dedicate a fixed seat in The Neilson (retractable seating bank and balcony) with a donation of $5,000
  • Dedicate a loose chair – one of the 230 individual chairs to be used in both The Neilson and the The Studio (as required) with a donation of $3,000.  While we can’t guarantee where the loose chairs will be placed at any given time, when they’re used in The Neilson to supplement the fixed seats, they’ll be closest to the action and the very best seats in the house. 

All seat dedication donations may be made in full or in instalments over a maximum period of 20-24 months:

  • Two payments of $2,500 (fixed seat)/$1,500 (loose chair) over 2 years
  • Four payments of $1,250 (fixed seat)/$750 (loose chair) over 2 years
  • Monthly payments of $250 (fixed seat)/$150 (loose chair) over 20 months

Please take this opportunity to play your part in the ACO’s history and in its bold new future.