Welcome to Odense Symphony Orchestra
With an internationally renowned Chief conductor, a praised Principal Guest Conductor, and 73 highly skilled musicians from 17 nations, Odense Symphony Orchestra has positioned itself internationally and contributes to the reputation of Odense and Denmark abroad.
The Odense Symphony Orchestra – one of Denmarks five regional orchestras – was established in 1946, but it’s roots go all the way back to about the year 1800. From being a theatre orchestra that also played symphonic music the orchestra today is a continuously developing and expanding modern symphony orchestra with 73 permanent musicians and a high level of activity. Concerts and productions with Odense Symphony Orchestra vary in terms of size and genre: from symphony concerts, light classical and opera to chamber music, children/youth concerts and crossovers.
The Odense Symphony Orchestra is based in Odense Concert Hall, which was inaugurated in 1982. Most of the orchestra’s concerts are given in the Carl Nielsen Hall, a concert hall with excellent acoustics, a seating capacity of 1,212 and a large 46-stops organ built by Marcussen & Son, one of the world’s leading organ builders.
Chief conductor, Alexander Vedernikov
The Russian Maestro, Alexander Vedernikov, was appointed Chief conductor and artistic adviser of the Odense Symphony Orchestra in May 2009. As former music director of the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow, Vedernikov has been credited with rebuilding the Bolshoi Theatre’s historical reputation for artistic excellence. Through his selection of music and personal influence, Vedernikov will have a great impact on the Danish orchestra’s artistic development in the near future. Vedernikov’s contract with Odense Symphony Orchestra runs until 2012 – with obligation to prolong. December 3rd 2009 Vedernikov will conduct his first concert with Odense Symphony Orchestra. In the season to come, six concerts are already on schedule.
Danish and international artists
Odense Symphony Orchestra performs concerts in company with soloists representing the crème-de-la-crème of both Danish and international artists. Among others the orchestra presents: Nikolaj Znaider, celebrated as one of the foremost violinists of today. Vassily Primakov, recently called a pianist’s pianist and the Danish opera singer, barytone Bo Skovhus etc.
Extraordinary talented people
The Odense Symphony Orchestra consists of 73 highly skilled professional musicians from 17 nations. Together they create a rich sound, warm and yet clear, upon which the principal players shape the special character of the orchestra.
Since 2007 Odense Symphony Orchestra has been headed by CEO Finn Schumacker. After eight years as principal tubist with the Bavarian State Opera as well as busy soloist and clinician, Schumacker changed pathway and has managed the orchestras in Aalborg and Helsingborg as well as the Royal Academy of Music in Aarhus.
Carl Nielsen International Competition and Festival
The Carl Nielsen International Music Competition was founded in the late 1970's by Odense Symphony Orchestra's then Chief Conductor, Karol Stryja and leader Peder Elbæk as well as by the City's Mayor Mr Verner Dalskov. In 1980 the first violin competition took place, and thereafter it has been held every four years in May-June. In 1997 and1998 the disciplines clarinet and flute were added to the Carl Nielsen Competition. Odense International Organ Competition was founded in the mid-80's by two of Odense's leading organ players, Poul Børch, Odense Cathedral and organist in Sct. Hans Church, Henning Nielsen as well as by Mayor of Odense Mr. Verner Dalskov. The Organ Competition was held for the first time in 1986 organized by the City of Odense. As of January 1, 2009 the Organ Competition was added as a fouth disciplin of the Carl Nielsen International Music Competition.
Productions and tours
The Odense Symphony Orchestra’s busy schedule comprises approx. 100 productions per year including symphonic and opera performances, recordings and tours. Since it’s first tour in 1975, the Odense Symphony Orchestra has played more than 100 concerts abroad: in the USA, China, Austria, Belgium, Germany, Greece, Holland, the Baltic countries, Russia, Spain and Sweden.
The orchestra’s discography of about 70 CD’s includes a varied repertoire reaching from classical masterpieces to contemporary music, among them several award winning releases.
Chopin: Piano Concertos 1 & 2, with Vassily Primakov, piano and Paul Mann, conductor on Bridge Records.
Grammy winner and nominees
In 1992 Odense Symphony Orchestra won a Danish Grammy for a recording of music by Frans Syberg, conducted by Tamas Vetö. Further the Odense Symphony Orchestra was nominated for a Danish Grammy in 2007 for the recording of Paul von Klenau: Die Liebe und Tod des Cornetts Christoph Rilke with star-barytone Bo Skovhus on Dacapo.
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Nowadays classic music is all around us, whether it be in restaurants, supermarkets, lifts, for advertising or as theme and incidental music on television. A great deal of film music either directly uses or draws from the 'classical' tradition; a good example might be classic music on film. As a regional and national orchestra, Odense Sympohony Orchestra is dedicated not only to preserving and presenting great classical music by great composers, but also to provide an exquisite experience to a broader audience.