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Founded in 1920, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra (CBSO) was introduced to the public with a concert conducted by the composer Edward Elgar. Such chief conductors as Adrian Boult, George Weldon, Andrzej Panufnik, and Louis Frémaux built up the orchestra’s profile, but it was especially Simon Rattle who led the CBSO to become a first-class international ensemble during his 18-year tenure (1980–98), enhancing its worldwide reputation. He was succeeded in the office of Music Director by the Finn Sakari Oramo (1998–2008) and the Latvian Andris Nelsons (2008–15); taking the reins in 2016, the young Lithuanian Maestra Mirga Gražinytė-
Tyla became the first woman to helm the CBSO. In the 2018-19 season, she will lead the orchestra in “The Baltic Way,” a project of 23 concerts featuring Baltic music to mark the centennial of the founding of the Baltic states. Kazuki Yamada will take up his position as the new Principal Guest Conductor, and Gidon Kremer will perform as artist-in-residence. The CBSO gives about 150 concerts annually. In addition to its classical programs, it presents the popular Friday Night Classics series, with excursions into film and pop music, as well as a comprehensive educational and performance program which the musicians offer in socially disadvantaged areas. Also included within the CBSO family are six choruses; the CBSO Youth Orchestra, which gathers the best young musicians from the East and West Midlands; and a large number of chamber ensembles. The CBSO is a regular guest at the BBC Proms in London and at the Aldeburgh Festival; as part of its current European tour, it will also perform at the Edinburgh Festival. The orchestra, which won the Royal Philharmonic Society Music Award in 2011, has released more than 200 recordings, many of which have won prestigious awards.
LUCERNE FESTIVAL (IMF) debut on 8 September 1996 in works by Berlioz, Beethoven, Tippett, and Haydn under Simon Rattle.
For further information on this ensemble, visit their homepage at: www.cbso.co.uk