Acknowledged as the UK’s foremost musical pioneer, with an extraordinary recording legacy, the Philharmonia Orchestra leads the field for its quality of playing, and for its innovative approach to audience development, residencies, music education and the use of new technologies in reaching a global audience. Together with its relationships with the world’s most sought-after artists, most importantly it’s Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor Esa-Pekka Salonen, the Philharmonia Orchestra is at the heart of British musical life.
Today, the Philharmonia has the greatest claim to be the UK’s National Orchestra. It is committed to presenting the same quality in venues throughout the country as it brings the great concert halls of the world. Under Esa-Pekka Salonen a series of flagship, visionary projects – City of Dreams: Vienna 1900 -1935 (2009) and Bill Viola’s Tristan und Isolde (2010) - have been critically acclaimed, and during 2011 Mr. Salonen presented Infernal Dance: Inside the World of Béla Bartók, a pan-European exploration of the life, influences and music of the composer.
For17 years the Orchestra’s work has been underpinned by its much admired UK and International Residency Programme, which began in 1995 with the launch of its residencies at the Bedford Corn Exchange and London’s Southbank Centre.
In 2012/2013 Composer/Conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen commences his fifth season as Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Philharmonia Orchestra London. After seventeen years at its helm as Music Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, he also holds the title of Conductor Laureate. Maestro Salonen’s artistic collaboration with the Philharmonia Orchestra has been dominated by landmark multi-disciplinary festivals, exploring the music of key 20th-century composers and musical movements in their widest possible cultural, social and historical context.
As a composer, Maestro Salonen’s works are regularly performed and broadcast around the world; Floof and LA Variations have become established as modern classics. His Violin Concerto won the 2012 University of Louisville Grawemeyer prize for Music Composition.
His dedication to technology, digital platforms and outreach has been realised through his work with the Philharmonia Orchestra on a number of innovative projects. In 2012, Maestro Salonen and the Philharmonia Digital Department created Universe of Sound an interactive hi-definition major installation at the Science Museum in London.
Maestro Salonen’s orchestral guest appearances are also diverse and include regular appearances with the Vienna and New York Philharmonics, and the Chicago Symphony.