Münchner Philharmoniker

The Munich Philharmonic was founded in 1893, and since then, under the direction of renowned conductors, it has vastly enriched Munich’s musical life. Gustav Mahler conducted the orchestra in the world premières of his 4th and 8th Symphonies, and in November 1911, the world première of Mahler’s “Das Lied von der Erde” took place under Bruno Walter’s direction. Ferdinand Löwe led the first Bruckner concerts and established the orchestra’s Bruckner tradition, which was then gloriously continued by Siegmund von Hausegger and Oswald von Kabasta.

During the Rudolf Kempe era the Philharmonic made its first tour to what was then the U.S.S.R. The legendary Bruckner concerts with general music director Sergiu Celibidache made a major contribution to the orchestra’s international reputation. The Munich Philharmonic made Zubin Mehta the first “conductor laureate” in the orchestra’s history. For the 100ths anniversary of the première of Gustav Mahler’s Symphony No. 8 in Munich, chief conductor Christian Thielemann conducted two performances of this work. He was succeeded as chief conductor by Lorin Maazel, who held the position until his death in 2014.

From 2015 to 2022 the position of chief conductor of the Munich Philharmonic was held by Valery Gergiev. Programme highlights conceived by Valery Gergiev include performances of symphonic cycles by Shostakovich, Stravinsky, Prokofiev and Rachmaninov as well as new formats, such as the “MPHIL 360°” festival. In September 2016, the first CD recordings documenting the Munich Philharmonic’s work were released under the orchestra’s own label, “MPHIL”. From 2017 to 2019, the Munich Philharmonic and Valery Gergiev recorded all of Anton Bruckner’s symphonies in the basilica of St. Florian Monastery, Anton Bruckner's final resting place.

With “Spielfeld Klassik”, the Munich Philharmonic has developed a comprehensive music education programme for young and old. Up to 35,000 people of all ages attended the more than 150 events held each year.

On 13 October 2018 the Munich Philharmonic and Valery Gergiev celebrated the 125th anniversary of the Munich Philharmonic by performing Igor Strawinsky's “Symphonie de Psaumes” and Gustav Mahler's Symphony No. 8. In October 2021, the Munich Philharmonic inaugurated the Isarphilharmonie – the orchestra’s new home and concert hall while the Gasteig is being renovated. The hall was designed by architects “Gerkan, Marg und Partner”, with the acoustics designed by Yasuhisa Toyota and his company Nagata Acoustics. True to the Munich Philharmonics’ new motto, “Being approachable and breaking new ground”, the orchestra is expanding its festival programme and will create new points of access for audiences with formats such as “mphil late”, “NACHtKLANG” and “Wandelkonzerte” to be held regularly from now on.


As of October 2022

Münchner Philharmoniker

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