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Miracles in the Age of Reason

Wednesday 18 / Thursday 19 May 2022

Llewellyn Hall, ANU School of Music, Acton, 7.30pm

Benjamin Bayl Conductor
Emma Sholl Flute
Canberra Symphony Orchestra

Jean-Philippe Rameau
Suite from Platée

Carl Philipp Emanuel (CPE) Bach
Flute Concerto in D minor, Wq. 22

Richard Meale AM, MBE
Cantilena Pacifica

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
Symphony No. 39 in E-flat major, K. 543

Adult $54–101
Concession $48–89
Under 30 $30
Student rush $15

Llewellyn Hall family packages available – call CSO Direct on 02 6262 6772 (weekdays 10am – 3pm).

Book any two 2022 concerts together to enjoy subscriber benefit: save up to 25 per cent across the season and enjoy two flexible ticket swaps. Learn more


The major intellectual, philosophical, social and artistic forces at work in Europe in the late seventeenth and eighteenth centuries were – in France, at least – outright revolutionary. Guided by values of rationality, order and science, Enlightenment thinkers like Voltaire, Jean-Jacques Rousseau and Denis Diderot championed individual reason as the source of truth and universal understanding, flying in the face of centuries-old traditions and religious ideas, including (dangerously) the ‘divine right’ of kings.

This upheaval resonates in Jean-Philippe Rameau’s Platée, a rousing comic masterpiece that turned operatic conventions upside down. Rameau’s ability to draw the most exhilarating sonic colours from the orchestra was astounding, his harmonic ideas well ahead of their time.

Meanwhile, reason shines in the works of Carl Philipp Emanuel (CPE) Bach, whose intellectual rigour lent rationality to even the boldest of his musical experiments. One of the composer’s best-loved works, this virtuosic flute concerto exemplifies CPE Bach’s melodic gift and evocative use of harmonic colour.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart was deeply influenced by the groundswell of intellectual discourse, religious inquiry and fierce political debate swirling in Vienna by the late eighteenth century. In the summer of 1788, penniless and out of vogue, Mozart directed his energies to the completion of three remarkable symphonies. Number 39 – the first of the set – is exuberant and unbounded, full of characteristically inventive, Mozartian flourishes.

Penned in the late 1970s, Richard Meale’s Cantilena Pacifica was written as a eulogy for a dear friend. Transparent, lyrical and achingly beautiful, it is a work of deeply lucid emotional truth.



When to arrive
Doors to Llewellyn Hall will open at 6.15pm. The pre-concert conversation will run from 6.30pm to 7pm (approx.), with the concert commencing at 7.30pmPlease allow sufficient time for parking.

Box Office
The Box Office in the ground floor Athenaeum will be open from 6pm for ticket purchase and collection. The Box Office is card only (no cash). 

FM radio assisted hearing units are available in Llewellyn Hall. To reserve a unit, call CSO Direct at least 24 hours in advance on 02 6262 6772 (weekdays 10am – 3pm). Hearing units can be collected from the Box Office in the ground floor Athenaeum. For information about wheelchair seating and other accessibility requirements, call CSO Direct or enquire directly with Llewellyn Hall.

Cloaking is not available at this time. We apologise for any inconvenience.

Free after-hours parking is available in front of the ANU School of Music, behind the ANU School of Art and in the Baldessin multi-storey carpark off Childers Street.

Atticus Coffee (Level 5, ANU School of Music) and the Athenaeum bar will be open pre-concert and at interval. The bar will accept card only (no cash).

Pre-concert conversation
6.30pm–7pm, Llewellyn Hall (free entry)
Concertgoers are invited to attend a free, pre-concert conversation between guest conductor Benjamin Bayl and the CSO’s Sally Walker

There will be a 20-minute interval from 8.15pm to 8.35pm (approx.).

Concert programs
Program notes and artist profiles for this concert are included in the sixth edition of rest, the CSO concert magazine. Complimentary copies will be available at the concert. Program notes are also available online.

Running order
6.00pm – Box Office opens
6.15pm – Doors to Llewellyn Hall open
6.30pm  Pre-concert conversation begins
7.00pm – Pre-concert conversation concludes (approx. timing)
7.30pm  Concert commences
8.15pm  Interval (approx. timing)
9.15pm – Concert concludes (approx. timing)


Part of the CSO’s 2022 Llewellyn Series

The mainstage is our epicentre, where a hundred voices move as one to delight, inspire, soothe and uplift. Join us with open hearts for the big human stories: revolution, loss, redemption and connection.

Also in this series:

Llewellyn Three: War and Peace (14 / 15 September 2022)
Llewellyn Four: Infinite Possibilities (23 / 24 November 2022)

All CSO events are delivered in line with ACT Government COVID-safe requirements. Read more