Artistic Director of SSO Fellowship. Kim Williams AM & Catherine Dovey Chair
Roger Benedict has worked as a soloist, chamber musician, orchestral player, teacher and conductor. He studied at the Royal Northern College of Music in Manchester (where he was later a professor), and the International Musicians' Seminar, Prussia Cove. In 1991 he was appointed Principal Viola of the Philharmonia Orchestra, and in 2002 Principal Viola of the Sydney Symphony Orchestra. He is also Artistic Director of the Orchestra's Fellowship program, and has performed as guest principal with the Chamber Orchestra of Europe.
As a soloist he has appeared with the Philharmonia Orchestra, Royal Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra Ulster Orchestra, and Orchestra Ensemble Kanazawa, Japan. He has performed Strauss's Don Quixote many times, and with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra he has performed Mozart's Sinfonia concertante, Berlioz's Harold in Italy, Ford's Unquiet Grave and Vaughan Williams' Flos Campi.
Other solo highlights include performances with cellists Lynn Harrell and Steven Isserlis, and concerts for the opening of the Melbourne Recital Centre in 2009. He has appeared at London's Wigmore Hall and Purcell Room, as well as all the major festivals and concert series in the UK. His chamber music partners have included Lorin Maazel, Simon Rattle, Louis Lortie and Leif Ove Andsnes, and he has performed as a guest artist with the Tinalley String Quartet and Sydney Soloists.
He has recorded several concertante works for BBC Radio 3, including Michael Berkeley's Viola Concerto, of which he gave the premiere, and he is frequently heard on ABC Classic FM. His debut recital CD Volupté (music by Koechlin and Jongen) was released in 2010, and his recording of Flos Campi with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra was released in 2011.
Roger Benedict has begun to establish himself as a conductor, regularly directing orchestras at the Sydney Conservatorium and Australian National Academy of Music, the National Youth Orchestra in London and Aldeburgh, and the Auckland Philharmonia Orchestra. In addition to leading the Sydney Symphony Orchestra Fellowship program, he is a Senior Lecturer at the Sydney Conservatorium of Music, a European Union Orchestra tutor, and was an orchestral mentor for the YouTube Symphony Orchestra 2011 in Sydney.
Roger Benedict plays a Carlo Antonio Testore viola made in Milan in 1753.