Beijing Symphony Orchestra

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Founded in 1977, Beijing Symphony Orchestra is one of China’s preeminent performance ensembles. Under the baton of current Artistic Director and Principal Conductor Tan Lihua and with considerable support from the municipal government of Beijing, the Orchestra has grown considerably and continues to garner international acclaim.

Performing more than 80 concerts each season, the BSO features some of China’s foremost musicians, and is widely noted for its artistic excellence and breadth of styles. The Orchestra’s extensive repertoire and unique Chinese style have helped to make the ensemble one of China’s cultural institutions. The Beijing Symphony Orchestra is a leading promoter of new music, and focuses on fostering composers from China, and throughout the world. Each year, the Orchestra commissions at least one major work from a Chinese composer, including works by Wan Xilin, Bao Yuankai and Zu Zhenmin. In addition to providing a performance platform for many of China’s top composers, the Beijing Symphony Orchestra is also dedicated to mounting artistically outstanding and innovative performances of the core orchestral repertoire. They have presented Chinese premieres of works such as Dvorak’s Symphony No. 6 and Symphony no. 7, as well as Bruckner’s Symphony No. 5 under the baton of Maestro Lihua.

The Beijing Symphony Orchestra routinely works with some of the greatest talent in the world – collaborating with singers Jose Carreras and Andrea Bocelli, pianists Lang Lang, and Yundi and violinists Vadim Repin and Sarah Chang. The Orchestra is dedicated to presenting the top artists to its audiences. In addition, they have played an active role in China’s cultural identity – in 2008, they recorded the National Anthem and Olympic Hymn for the 2008 Beijing Olympics.

The Orchestra has also been at the forefront of innovative creation in China. In 2010, the BSO produced a unique concert series, which included the chorale from Beethoven’s Symphony No. 9, as well as a specially commissioned work for the concert. The concert was performed on Kunlun Mountain Pass’s Yu Zhu Peak – at an altitude of 4,300 meters, making it the highest altitude symphony concert record holder in the Guinness Book of World Records.

The Beijing Symphony Orchestra records exclusively on contract with EMI Records.