The Staatskapelle Berlin is a German symphony orchestra and the resident orchestra of the Berlin State Opera (Berliner Staatsoper Unter den Linden).
The orchestra traces its roots to 1570, when Joachim II Hector, Elector of Brandenburg established the rules for an orchestra at his court which had been constituted, at an unknown date. In 1701, the affiliation of the Electors of Brandenburg to the position of King of Prussia led to the description of the orchestra as "Königlich Preußische Hofkapelle" (Royal Prussian Court Orchestra), which consisted of about 30 musicians. The orchestra became affiliated with the Royal Court Opera, established in 1742 by Frederick the Great. Noted musicians associated with the orchestra have included Carl Philipp Emanuel Bach, Franz Benda, and Johann Joachim Quantz
The first concert by the ensemble for a wider audience outside of the royal courts was on 1 March 1783 at the Hotel Paris, led by Johann Friedrich Reichardt, the ensemble's Kapellmeister. After the advent of Giacomo Meyerbeer as Kapellmeister, from 1842, the role of the orchestra expanded and a first annual concert series for subscribers was launched. The orchestra gave a number of world and German premieres of works by Richard Wagner, Felix Mendelssohn, and Otto Nicolai.
The orchestra's music director, the Staatskapellmeister, holds the same post with the Berlin State Opera. The orchestra was in the East German part of Berlin, and thus was part of East Germany from 1945 to 1990.
The current holder of the posts has been Daniel Barenboim since 1992. Barenboim has had the title of "conductor for life" for the ensemble since 2000. Barenboim and the orchestra have made several recordings for the Teldec and Decca labels. Barenboim and the orchestra presented the nine numbered symphonies of Anton Bruckner in a concert series at Carnegie Hall in New York City in January 2017.
- Andrew Clements (2004-02-27). "Schumann: The Symphonies, Staatskapelle Berlin/ Barenboim". The Guardian. Retrieved 2009-02-08.
- Anthony Holden (2006-04-02). "Classical CDs: Mahler". The Observer. Retrieved 2009-02-08.
- "Bruckner Symphony Cycle – Staatskapelle Berlin, Daniel Barenboim, music director and conductor – January 19–29, 2017", performance details, Carnegie Hall