Principals 25 Sydney Symphony Orchestra Rebrand

  • Pou Auaha / Creative Directors
    Simon Wright, Martin Hopkins
  • Ngā Kaimahi / Team Members
    Wayde Bull, Lavanya Ashok, Agus Wijaya, Jordan Demetriou, David Cunningham, Ben Williams, Hayden Mathys, Renee Stekel, Elaine Ma, Lisa Wilson
  • Client
    Sydney Symphony Orchestra

In a city that’s overflowing with contemporary culture, the Sydney Symphony battles for relevance with younger audiences, who aren’t introduced to the classical artform in the way their parents and grandparents were. This has left the SSO reliant upon a devoted yet aging community of supporters, who can’t sustain the orchestra for ever. The Symphony now needs to attract the post-Boomer generations, many of whom are yet to experience the power of live classical music.

To uncover fresh creative territory we asked the SSO’s musicians and devoted subscribers to describe to us the feelings that great classical music evokes. And got young contemporary music enthusiasts who hadn’t seriously experienced classical music to give it a try. Amongst both converts and newcomers all could agree that orchestral music is deeply moving. The brand idea we developed was all about inviting listeners to ‘Feel More’ through the incomparable power of classical music, when experienced live.

The new identity system was designed to be unapologetically loud, contemporary and bursting with energy. We created the kinetic type treatment based upon an insight from one of the orchestra’s violinists, who explained that the waves of sound the orchestra create when playing in unison literally vibrates through the bodies of the musicians on stage. We had found the perfect visual metaphor to build the new identity system around.
A look as bold and striking as the music that it champions.

The new identity system is a dramatic departure from the orchestra’s old look and has been designed with digital and social media in mind. Animation is a central element of the system which now features heavily on their website and in a growing amount of video content the team are creating [to keep supporters engaged through on-again, off-again lockdowns].

The orchestra’s musicians feature heavily in the new identity system, but not in the usual stiff and formal fashion you’d expect. The photography and video treatments seek to capture these passionate musicians in full flight.

The language employed to describe the music is now much more informal and more descriptive of the feelings that we wish listeners to experience.

Every element of the system designed to evoke a full-on feeling.