BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus

The BBC Symphony Orchestra has been at the heart of British musical life since it was founded in 1930. It provides the backbone of the BBC Proms, performing around a dozen concerts at the festival each year.


The BBC SO has a strong commitment to 20th century and contemporary music, with recent and upcoming performances including commissions and premieres from Anna Clyne, Brett Dean, Philip Cashion, George Walker and Raymond Yiu.


It performs an annual season of concerts at the Barbican, where it is Associate Orchestra. The 2017–18 season includes Sakari Oramo’s Sibelius symphony series, Total Immersion composer days devoted to Esa-Pekka Salonen, Julian Anderson and Leonard Bernstein, a concert staging of Jake Heggie’s opera Dead Man Walking and an evening with American writer Armistead Maupin.


The BBC Symphony Orchestra also works regularly with Semyon Bychkov, who holds the Günter Wand Conducting Chair, and Conductor Laureate Sir Andrew Davis. It regularly performs with the BBC Symphony Chorus and together they won the 2015 Gramophone Best Choral Disc Award for their recording of Elgar’s The Dream of Gerontius.


Central to the orchestra’s life are studio recordings for BBC Radio 3 at its Maida Vale home, some of which are free for the public to attend, and the BBC SO also performs throughout the world. The vast majority of concerts are broadcast on BBC Radio 3, streamed online and available for 30 days after broadcast via the Radio 3 website.


The BBC SO is committed to innovative education work: ongoing projects include the BBC’s Ten Pieces, the BBC SO Journey Through Music (with pre-concert workshops and discounted tickets for families) and the BBC SO Family Orchestra and Chorus.

More information:
Official Homepage

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Julian Anderson

The Comedy of Change

Heaven is Shy of Earth

Susan Bickley, mezzo-soprano

BBC Symphony Orchestra and Chorus

Oliver Knussen, conductor

ODE 1313-2

Released 10/2018

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