Sydney Philharmonia Choirs appoints Matthew Beale as Executive Director

Sydney Philharmonia Choirs is thrilled to announce the appointment of Matthew Beale as Executive Director, charged with advancing the Choirs’ position as one of Australia’s leading arts organisations.

A seasoned arts professional with over 30 years’ experience working in choral music organisations, Beale joins Sydney Philharmonia Choirs from the UK, where – for the past nine years – he has worked alongside renowned Choral Director Suzi Digby OBE as Chief Executive of the critically acclaimed ORA Singers.

Under Beale’s strategic leadership this newly formed professional choral company swiftly rose to prominence, earning numerous industry awards – including the Opus Klassik for best ensemble, Germany’s highest music prize – within its first five years; initiating ground-breaking new collaborations, commissioning over 60 new choral works and recording 10 critically acclaimed albums, which in turn achieved global radio play.

With a passionate belief in the transformative power of singing and a strong commitment to fostering new and under-supported talent, he introduced the ORA Singers’ Young Composers’ Scheme, aimed at underprivileged state school students; and the Graduate Showcase, providing opportunities for composers in the early stage of their professional careers. Beale is also a former professional operatic tenor, having performed roles at Royal Opera House Covent Garden, Glyndebourne, Berlin’s Staatsoper and Venice’s Teatro La Fenice.

Beale will work alongside Sydney Philharmonia Choirs esteemed Artistic & Music Director, Brett Weymark OAM and Associate Music Director Elizabeth Scott, to build on the organisation’s longstanding history of excellence, and cement its national and global reputation.

Elizabeth Metanios, Chair:

We are delighted to appoint such an influential and highly respected figure within the global choral music sector. Matthew’s sound management and leadership background, along with his exemplary understanding of global best practice in arts management, are just what is needed to oversee the organisation’s next phase of growth and extended national profile.

Brett Weymark:

I could not be happier to be welcoming Matthew to the Sydney Philharmonia Choirs family, precisely as an exciting new chapter begins. I look forward to working together to meaningfully extend the Choirs’ programs and influence, by engaging more innovatively within our diverse community, and facilitating new world-class opportunities for Australian voices to be heard at the highest level.

Matthew Beale:

Sydney Philharmonia Choirs is a world-class organisation with an amazing reputation and history, and one that I have admired for some time, so I am delighted to be joining at this pivotal moment, as the company looks to its future, locally, nationally and internationally. Brett Weymark and Elizabeth Scott bring choral music alive with their energy, experience and dedication, and their passion is echoed not only within their established choirs, but also by the 1,000+ singers who are part of our community programs each year.

I’m excited to be working with them all, as well as building on the partnerships that the company already enjoys with some of Australia’s most recognised cultural institutions. I look forward to enhancing the Choirs’ exceptional legacy and ensuring that it truly represents the vibrancy, vitality, variety and vision of modern Australia.

Beale will soon be joined in Sydney by his wife, Australian conductor, Natalie Murray Beale, whose boundary-pushing international career has seen her based in the UK for the past two decades; and their two sons, aged 13 and 9. With recent collaborations including coaching Australian actress Cate Blanchett in the art of conducting for her role in the feature film TÁR, Natalie Murray Beale’s return to home shores also heralds fresh excitement within the Australian arts and music sectors.

The eldest of Beale’s brothers is the celebrated English actor Sir Simon Russell Beale CBE, who – coming from a family where music was a constant – also acknowledges the transformative power of singing.

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