Print Shortlink

New York Philharmonic

This orchestra is one of the oldest in the world and the oldest in the United States.  Based in New York City, it was founded in 1842 by Ureli Corelli Hill and a group of local musicians as the Philharmonic Society.  Its first concert was for an audience of 600 in the Apollo Rooms on lower Broadway whereas today they play for up to approximately 2,700 at the Avery Fisher Hall, which is part of the Lincoln Center.

It has always taken a lead in performing new music and has premiered important works that include Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 3, George Gershwin’s Concerto in F and Dvorak’s Symphony No. 9 From the New World.  In addition, it has given the American premieres of established compositions such as Brahms Symphony No. 4 and Beethoven’s 8th and 9th symphonies.

In 1921 they merged with the National Symphony and become one of the first orchestras in America to stage an outdoor symphony series of low-priced summer concerts as well as expanding the Young Peoples Concerts in 1924.  In 1928 they merged once more, this time with the New York Symphony Society.

It has had many celebrated musical directors over the years including Pyotr Tchaikovsky, Antonin Dvorak, Gustav Mahler, Igor Stravinsky, Aaron Copland, Leonard Bernstein, Zubin Metha, Kurt Masur, Lorin Maazel, Alan Gilbert and the present holder of the post is Jaap van Zweden.

In 1930 they performed the first coast-to-coast live concert and up to 2005 had performed live in 57 countries and 416 cities.

They launched Kidzone on the internet in 1999 which is an interactive site for children and teachers and in 2002 they had live broadcasts streamed for a period of 2 weeks on the internet to reach a worldwide audience.

They began their recording career in 1917 and to date they have recorded nearly 2000 albums, with 500 of them still being available for purchase.  In 2003 they were honoured with the Trustees Award of The Recording Academy for its contribution to the industry and American culture.  They have been the recipients of 19 Grammy Awards and in December 2004 they set a Guinness World Record by performing their 14,000th concert.

In 2008 they performed in Pyongyang, North Korea, after receiving an invitation from their government.

John Coolidge Adams Recordings
On The Transmigration of Souls
Nonesuch 79816 (CD: On The Transmigration of Souls)
Conductor – Lorin Maazel