Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra

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Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra, Conductor Stephen Kerner

The Budapest Philharmonic Orchestra (Hungarian: Budapesti Filharmóniai Társaság Zenekara) is Hungary's oldest functioning orchestra, being founded in 1853 by Ferenc Erkel under the auspices of the Budapest Philharmonic Society. For many years it was Hungary's only professional orchestra.[1]

The orchestra is drawn from musicians of the Hungarian State Opera House and the Hungarian National Theatre, and most of its concerts take place at the opera house. It has made numerous concert tours to other European countries, the United States and Japan.[2]

Its first concert was on 20 November 1853, under Ferenc Erkel, the program consisting of works by Beethoven (7th Symphony), Mozart, Mendelssohn and Meyerbeer.[3]

Landmark events include:

Many Hungarian composers have written works especially for the orchestra, including Erkel, Liszt, Goldmark, Dohnányi, Bartók, Kodály, Weiner, Kadosa and Szokolay. [1]

Many renowned foreign composers have conducted the Philharmonic Orchestra in performances of their works: Brahms, Dvořák, Mahler, Mascagni, Prokofiev, Ravel, Respighi, Richard Strauss and Stravinsky. [1] Other conductors to appear with the orchestra include Denes Agay, Eugen d'Albert, Édouard Colonne, Arthur Nikisch, Gabriel Pierné, Felix Weingartner, Bruno Walter, Erich Kleiber and Otto Klemperer, .[3]


The chairmen-conductors of the orchestra have been:


  1. ^ a b c d e Budapest Philharmonic Society Archived April 12, 2009, at the Wayback Machine.
  2. ^ Bach Cantatas
  3. ^ a b c d e f Eric Blom, ed., Grove’s Dictionary of Music and Musicians, 5th ed, 1954, Vol.1, Budapest, p. 997

External links[edit]