Also known as the Berliner Philharmoniker this orchestra was founded in 1882 in Berlin by the 54 members of the Bilse’s Band (Fruhere Bilsesche Kapelle) who had broken away from the group after they had refused to get on a train, for a performance in Warsaw, with fourth class tickets.
It was named in 1887 and they were joined by the conductor, Hans von Bulow. They began to achieve recognition with their many guest conductors that included Edvard Grieg, Gustav Mahler, Hans Richter, Richard Strauss and Johannes Brahms.
In 1923 Wilhem Furtwangler became their chief conductor and he stayed with them for their performances throughout WWII before fleeing to Switzerland in 1945. Leo Borchard took over from him but was accidentally killed by American forces who shot him by mistake.
In 1955 Herbert von Karajan became the conductor and with him they toured and recorded extensively until a few months before his death in 1989. He was followed by Claudio Addabo who extended the repertoire to include more modern works before stepping down in 2002. Sir Simon Rattle joined them in 2002 and he made it a condition that they would become self-governing. They created the Digital Concert Hall in 2008.
The original concert hall which housed them was bombed in 1944 and they moved into the Berliner Philharmonie in 1963.
Their recordings are many and they have been the recipients of two BRIT Awards, 2 ICMA Awards, 7 Grammy Awards, 6 Gramophone Awards and a Timbre de Platine. Aside from their classical recordings they have also appeared on the soundtrack release for 2001: A Space Odyssey and on the album Moments of Glory by The Scorpions among others.
Tomaso Giovanni Albinoni recordings
Adagio in G
Deutsche Grammophon DG 419 046-2 (CD: Albinoni/Pachelbel/Corelli & Manfredini/Vivaldi)
Conductor – Herbert Von Karajan
Adagio in G
Deutsche Grammophon DG. 445 282-2 (CD: Adagio – Karajan)
Conductor – Herbert von Karajan