About the London Philharmonic Orchestra
One of the finest orchestras on the international stage, the London Philharmonic Orchestra balances a long and distinguished history with its reputation as one of the UK’s most forward-looking ensembles. As well as its concert performances, the Orchestra also records film soundtracks, releases CDs and downloads on its own label, and reaches thousands of people every year through activities for families, schools and local communities.
The London Philharmonic Orchestra was founded by Sir Thomas Beecham in 1932, and has since been headed by many great conductors including Sir Adrian Boult, Bernard Haitink, Sir Georg Solti, Klaus Tennstedt and Kurt Masur. In September 2021 Edward Gardner became the Orchestra’s Principal Conductor, succeeding Vladimir Jurowski, who became Conductor Emeritus in recognition of his transformative impact on the Orchestra as Principal Conductor from 2007–21.
The London Philharmonic Orchestra has performed at Southbank Centre’s Royal Festival Hall since it opened in 1951, becoming Resident Orchestra in 1992. As well as its London home, it also has flourishing residencies in Brighton, Eastbourne and Saffron Walden, and each summer plays for Glyndebourne Festival Opera, where it has been Resident Symphony Orchestra for over 50 years. The Orchestra also tours internationally, performing to sell–out audiences worldwide.
The London Philharmonic Orchestra broadcasts regularly on television and radio. It also works with the Hollywood and UK film industries, recording soundtracks for blockbuster motion pictures including the Oscar–winning score for The Lord of the Rings trilogy. In 2005 it established its own record label which now numbers over 100 releases all available on CD and to stream or download.
In summer 2012 the London Philharmonic Orchestra performed as part of The Queen’s Diamond Jubilee Pageant on the River Thames, and was also chosen to record all the world’s national anthems for the London 2012 Olympics.
The London Philharmonic Orchestra’s dynamic Education & Community programme provides first musical experiences to children and families; offers creative projects and professional development opportunities for schools and teachers; inspires talented teenage instrumentalists to progress their skills; and develops the next generation of professional musicians.
Over the pandemic period the LPO further developed its relationship with UK and international audiences through its “LPOnline” digital content: over 100 videos of performances, insights, and introductions to playlists, which collectively received over 3 million views worldwide and led to the LPO being named runner–up in the Digital Classical Music Awards 2020. From Autumn 2020 the Orchestra was delighted to be able to return to its Southbank Centre home to perform a season of concerts filmed live and streamed free of charge via Marquee TV. September 2021 saw the opening of a new concert season with live audiences at the Royal Festival Hall.