London Philharmonic Orchestra

Essential Albums

About London Philharmonic Orchestra

Some orchestras take decades to develop high standards, but the London Philharmonic made a spectacular impact from the start. Founded in 1932 by conductors Thomas Beecham and Malcolm Sargent, the orchestra’s first concert electrified the Queen’s Hall audience. Beecham conducted it, securing a standard of technical brilliance and musicality normally heard only from visiting foreign orchestras. His personal charisma was crucial in recruiting the best players available to the Philharmonic, and his many concerts and recordings helped establish an international reputation for the orchestra before World War Two. Life after the war was initially difficult, but the principal conductorships of Adrian Boult (1950-58) and Bernard Haitink (1967-79) were instrumental in re-establishing high artistic standards. The Philharmonic had played opera for Beecham in the 1930s, and its appointment in 1964 as the resident orchestra at the Glyndebourne Opera Festival was another important postwar development. Numerous video recordings resulted from the Glyndebourne relationship, and in 2005 the London Philharmonic established its own record label, releasing acclaimed recordings of selected live concerts. Embracing the new digital era, the orchestra launched a TikTok account in 2021, quickly garnering an online audience of more than 54,000 followers.

London, England
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