London Symphony Orchestra

London Symphony Orchestra
The London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), founded in 1904, is the oldest of London's symphony orchestras. It was set up by a group of players who left Henry Wood's Queen's Hall Orchestra because of a new rule requiring players to give the orchestra their exclusive services. The LSO itself later introduced a similar rule for its members. From the outset, the LSO was organised on co-operative lines, with all players sharing the profits at the end of each season. This practice continued for the orchestra's first four decades.

The LSO underwent periods of eclipse in the 1930s and 1950s when it was regarded as inferior in quality to new London orchestras, to which it lost players and bookings: the BBC Symphony Orchestra and the London Philharmonic in the 1930s and the Philharmonia and Royal Philharmonic after the Second World War. The profit-sharing principle was abandoned in the post-war era as a condition of receiving public subsidy for the first time. In the 1950s the orchestra debated whether to concentrate on film work at the expense of symphony concerts; many senior players left when the majority of players rejected the idea. By the 1960s the LSO had recovered its leading position, which it has retained subsequently. In 1966, to perform alongside it in choral works, the orchestra established the LSO Chorus, originally a mix of professional and amateur singers, later a wholly amateur ensemble.

As a self-governing body, the orchestra selects the conductors with whom it works. At some stages in its history, it has dispensed with a principal conductor and worked only with guests. Among conductors with whom it is most associated are, in its early days, Hans Richter, Sir Edward Elgar, and Sir Thomas Beecham, and in more recent decades Pierre Monteux, André Previn, Claudio Abbado, Sir Colin Davis, and Valery Gergiev.

Since 1982, the LSO has been based in the Barbican Centre in the City of London. Among its programmes there have been large-scale festivals celebrating composers as diverse as Berlioz, Mahler and Bernstein. The LSO claims to be the world's most recorded orchestra; it has made gramophone recordings since 1912 and has played on more than 200 soundtrack recordings for the cinema, of which the best known include the Star Wars series.
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London Symphony Orchestra

London Symphony Orchestra

The London Symphony Orchestra (LSO), founded in 1904, is the oldest of London's symphony orchestras. It was set up by a group of players who left Henry Wood's Queen's Hall Orchestra because of a new rule requiring players to give the orchestra their exclusive services. The LSO itself later introduced a similar rule for its members. From the outset, the LSO was organised on co-operative lines, with all players sharing the profits at the end of ...
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52 albums
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TCHAIKOVSKY 1812 Overture
TCHAIKOVSKY Capriccio Italien
TCHAIKOVSKY Marche Slave
Recorded 1958

Total duration: 39:06

London Symphony Orchestra
conducted by Kenneth Alwyn
with The Band of H.M. Grenadier Guards
Director of Music Major F. J. Harris MBE

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SIBELIUS A Collection of Shorter Works
Recorded 1930-41
Total duration: 73:44

Featuring various orchestras conducted by:
Beecham, Heward, Kajanus, Koussevitzky, Ormandy
plus chamber music recordings featuring:
Emil Telmanyi
and Louis Jensen

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BLISS Tobias and the Angel

Live recording, BBC Television, 19 May 1960

    HOPKINS Hands Across The Sky
    BBC studio recording, c. 1960
    Total duration: 2hr 9:53

    London Symphony Orchestra
    conducted by Norman Del Mar
    Intimate Opera Chamber Ensemble
    conducted by Antony Hopkins
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    VAUGHAN WILLIAMS Symphony No. 6

    Recorded in 1949
    Duration 32:54

    London Symphony Orchestra
    Conducted by Sir Adrian Boult

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    SAINT-SAËNS Introduction & Rondo Capriccioso
    SAINT-SAËNS Havanaise

    Recorded in 1953
    Total duration 18:44

    Alfredo Campoli, violin
    London Symphony Orchestra
    Conducted by Anatole Fistoulari

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    BACH (arr Elgar) - Fantasia and Fugue in C minor
    BEETHOVEN - Gratulations-Menuett
    BEETHOVEN The Creatures of Prometheus - Overture
    BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 9 'Choral'
    Recorded between 1925 & 1928
    Total duration:  78:04 

    Elsie Suddaby, soprano
    Nellie Walker,
    contralto
    Walter Widdop,
    tenor
    Stuart Robinson,
    bass
    Philharmonic Choir
    London Symphony Orchestra
    Albert Coates,
    conductor