Hannah Woolley and her Oboe Play Mozart with Hans Hug’s FCO

Freo has all sorts of wonderful things – its own chamber orchestra included.

Hans Hug founded the FCO – Fremantle Chamber Orchestra – in 2005.

Since then, FCO has provided great enjoyment to local music lovers as well as performance experience to talented young professionals who may be advanced UWA and WAAPA students, WASO casuals, or freelancers.

Until Covid hit, the internationally renowned Dutch violinist Rudolf Koelman also performed annually with FCO. Mr Koelman is the winner of the prestigious Edison Classic Music Award 2010, one of Jascha Heifetz’s last students and a violinist who just happens to play on the Woolhouse Stradivarius. 

Live recordings of FCO with Mr Koelman resulted in 2 acclaimed CDs, broadcast on Radio ABC National Classic FM and 4.7 million hits on YouTube. 

In 2021, FCO performed for the first time outside Freo, in Geraldton and Armadale, with a program that appealed to people of all ages and walks of life.

Covid has of course been a challenge, and continues to be for everyone in the performing arts. Audience restrictions, late date changes, clashes with other performing artists’ events being just a few of the issues to be grappled with. But FCO soldiers on.

FCO is an incorporated not-for-profit and all organisational and admin work is done on a voluntary basis.  Indeed Hans Hug does most of that work himself – when he’s not playing the 3rd cello.

It goes without saying that FCO depends on significant community support to survive these difficult times.

FCO has a reputation for exciting programming and the forthcoming oboe performance of FCO with Hannah Woolley in Freo on 19 March (and then the next night at the Redemptorist Monastery in North Perth) is a great example.

You won’t want to miss it, so book quickly. With Covid restrictions, only 150 seats are available for the Fremantle performance. Here are more details and how to book. Ring Natalie soon.

The oboe is a beautiful instrument, oboe orchestration by Mozart is always superb, and Hannah’s mastery of the instrument will make the afternoon memorable.

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Hans Hug kindly sat down with our editor, Michael Barker, to discuss his own fascinating musical story, all things FCO, and the forthcoming performance. Here’s the podcast interview. It’s a really lovely discussion. Enjoy!