Founded in 1919, the Bochumer Symphoniker has developed over the course of its history into one of the most important concert sound bodies in Western Germany. Its participation in renowned festivals, numerous guest concerts, for example in the Cologne Philharmonic, the Konzerthaus Dortmund or the Essen Philharmonic (where the symphony orchestra performed a cycle of Gustav Mahler’s complete works) as well as its regular participation in the Klavier-Fesival Ruhr have consolidated the reputation of the Bochum Symphony Orchestra as a versatile orchestra.
Steven Sloane has been General Music Director of the Bochumer Symphoniker since 1994. Thanks to his innovative programmes and stirring style of leadership, the orchestra has experienced an upswing that is not only reflected in enthusiastic reactions from audiences and the press: the Bochum Symphony Orchestra has twice (1996/1997 and 2004/2005 seasons) received the coveted award for “The Best Concert Programme” from the Deutscher Musikverleger-Verband (German Music Publishers Association).
The orchestra of the city of Bochum has also made a name for itself internationally: with concert tours to Israel, Austria, Estonia and the USA, the orchestra has been just as convincing as with regular appearances in the Amsterdam Concertgebouw or through the concerts it performed at the international cultural festival RuhrTriennale, such as the internationally acclaimed and celebrated production of Zimmermann’s “The Soldiers”. At the invitation of the renowned Lincoln Center Festival, the Bochum Symphony Orchestra travelled to New York with this spectacular opera production in the summer of 2008, where it was received enthusiastically by media and audience alike.
As part of the European Capital of Culture RUHR.2010, the Bochum Symphony Orchestra was involved in numerous trend-setting projects: During the opening ceremony they played with Herbert Grönemeyer the specially composed Ruhr Area anthem “Komm zur Ruhr”, which subsequently also stormed the radio charts as a CD, they made an extensive contribution to the Henze Project, a tribute to the composer, they were part of the performance of Gustav Mahler’s “Symphonie der Tausend” under Lorin Maazel and finally accompanied over 65,000 singers as stadium orchestra in the closing ceremony DAY OF SONG “auf Schalke” in Gelsenkirchen.
The Bochumer Symphoniker also proved their high musical standards, flexibility and love of innovation without fear of contact in numerous cross-over projects, such as concerts with Jethro Tull frontman Ian Anderson, with the legendary a-capella formation Take Six or at the joint concert with Herbert Grönemeyer in the Ruhr Stadium, which was sold out with 29,000 listeners. In the spring of 2011, the orchestra accompanied the British world star Sting on his Symphonicities World Tour on seven stops in Germany and Switzerland. The BoSy are also convincing on TV: in the Harald Schmidt Show on SAT1, the orchestra confidently substituted the studio band and used the much acclaimed performance to convincingly rejuvenate the image of classical music.
For the British label ASV the orchestra recorded the complete works of the German late romantic Joseph Marx; the first CD “Natur-Trilogie” was awarded CD of the month by the British Music Society shortly after its release, the second CD “Orchesterlieder” was nominated for a Grammy. In the 2008/2009 season, recordings of a series of orchestral and stage works by the American composer George Antheil for the German label cpo began. The recent recording of Mahler and Rihm songs with the tenor Christoph Prégardien, also for cpo, received top marks from “Klassik heute”, among others.
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