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West Phil Artistic Committee

Fabian Russell

Our Artistic Director is Fabian Russell. In a career spanning more than three decades, Fabian has been at the forefront of the Australian classical music industry as a multi-­‐award winning conductor, artistic director, orchestral musician, soloist and teacher.
Fabian has received invitations to conduct orchestras including the Melbourne Symphony Orchestra, Sydney Symphony Orchestra, Queensland Symphony Orchestra, Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra, Victorian Opera, Canberra Symphony Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra, Orchestra Victoria, Australian National Academy of Music Orchestra, Australian Youth Orchestra, Melbourne Chamber Orchestra, Malaysian Philharmonic Youth Orchestra, Niedersächsisches Jugensinfonieorchester, Sydney Youth Orchestra, Darwin Symphony Orchestra, Geelong Symphony Orchestra, University of Tasmania Conservatorium Orchestra, Griffith University Queensland Conservatorium of Music Symphony Orchestra, Monash University Academy Orchestra and the University of Melbourne Symphony Orchestra. He has collaborated with leading soloists including legendary American pianist Gary Graffman, Brett Dean, Richard Tognetti, Leslie Howard, Daniel de Borah, Stefan Cassomenos, Kristian Chong, Michael Kieran Harvey and Kristian Winther.
Fabian has held numerous conducting positions including Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of The Orchestra Project since 2002, Associate Conductor/Assistant Conductor of the Australian Youth Orchestra since 2002, Principal Conductor and Artistic Director of the Melbourne Youth Orchestra from 2007-­‐2012, Principal Conductor Monash University Academy Orchestra from 2011-­‐2015, Principal Guest Conductor University of Melbourne Conservatorium Symphony Orchestra from 2011-­‐2017.
In 2002 Fabian founded The Orchestra Project – the Melbourne based training orchestra comprised of Australia’s pre-­‐eminent emerging artists who perform alongside members of Australia’s professional orchestras. He serves as Artistic Director and Principal Conductor of The Orchestra Project, receiving significant support from the Australian National Academy of Music. The Project has completed 33 performance seasons since its inception. The Orchestra Project’s Sydney debut took place in December 2019 performing Mahler Symphony No. 4, that followed performances of Mahler Symphony No. 5, 6 and 9 in Melbourne for the Easter seasons of 2017-­‐2019. The 20th Anniversary concert of The Orchestra Project took place in Sydney in 2022 in a performance of Richard Strauss Ein Heldenleben and Brahms Piano Concerto No. 2 with Daniel de Borah as soloist.
In addition to his substantial orchestral repertoire, Fabian has a strong interest in commissioning and performing new music. He has conducted world and Australian premieres of more than thirty major works by composers including Gordon Kerry, Brett Dean, James Ledger, Mary Finsterer, Stefan Cassomenos, Harry Sdraulig, Kate Moore and Holly Harrison. He has also recorded extensively for film, television and radio, and has conducted Film and Orchestra projects for IMG Classics with the Malaysian Philharmonic Orchestra.
In 2013, Fabian made his Victorian Opera debut in a new production of John Adams’ Nixon in China
that receiving considerable critical acclaim resulting in the 2014 Green Room Award for Outstanding
Conductor, as well as the 2014 Helpmann Award nomination for Best Music

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