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Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg

Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg

The orchestra of the Grand Duchy, the Orchestre Philharmonique du Luxembourg (OPL), represents a very dynamic part of the culture of its country. Since its stunning debut in 1933 under the aegis of Radio Luxembourg (RTL), the orchestra has been present all over Europe.

Publicly administered since 1996, the OPL has been, since 2005, in residence at the Philharmonie Luxembourg, one of the most prestigious concert halls in Europe. Since January 2012 both institutions have formed one and the same entity.

 The acoustics of its residence, praised by great orchestras, conductors and soloists all over the world, its long-standing connections with institutions like the Salle Pleyel in Paris and the Amsterdam Concertgebouw and with festivals like Musica (Strasbourg) and Ars Musica (Brussels) have contributed to making the OPL an orchestra renowned for the elegance of its sonority. Moreover, the precision and musicality of its music director, Emmanuel Krivine, and the orchestra’s close collaboration with first-rate musical personalities such as Evgeny Kissin, Julia Fischer and Jean-Yves Thibaudet have consolidated the orchestra’s reputation. Its standing has been confirmed by an impressive list of prizes awarded for some twenty recordings, all released in the last five years: Grand Prix Charles Cros, Victoires de la musique classique, Orphée d’Or de l’Académie du Disque Lyrique, Preis der Deutschen Schallplattenkritik, Télérama ffff, Pizzicato Excellentia, IRR Outstanding, BBC Music Choice, as well as several Diapasons d’Or, Choc du Monde de la Musique, Pizzicato Supersonic, Classica R10 and many others.

 Now in his sixth season, Emmanuel Krivine is the sixth music director of the OPL (after Henri Pensis, Louis de Froment, Leopold Hager, David Shallon and Bramwell Tovey). A disciple of Karl Böhm, Emmanuel Krivine holds to the ideal of a symphony orchestra, adapting to all available idioms and repertoires. This open attitude and the clarity of his readings have enabled the OPL to make a name for itself as ‘a transparent, elegant orchestra with a beautiful palette of colours’ (Le Figaro), ‘free from anything flowery or nebulous but imbued with stylistic security and attuned to the specific qualities of each piece’ (WDR). Alongside the classic and romantic repertoire, the orchestra’s programme reserves an important place for music of the twentieth and twenty-first centuries: works by Ivo Malec, Hugues Dufourt, Toshio Hosokawa, Klaus Huber, Bernd Alois Zimmermann, Helmut Lachenmann, Georges Lentz, Philippe Gaubert, Gabriel Pierné, Arthur Honegger and many others are regularly performed. The orchestra has also recorded the complete orchestral works of Iannis Xenakis.

The orchestra demonstrates its diversity with regular opera productions staged at the Grand Théâtre de Luxembourg; film concerts like ‘Live Cinema’ in collaboration with the Cinémathèque de la Ville de Luxembourg; ‘Pops at the Phil’ evenings with such stars as Patti Austin, Dionne Warwick, Maurane and Angélique Kidjo; open-air concerts with jazz and rock groups as part of the Fête de la Musique and so on. Soloists featured in the 2012/13 season include Radu Lupu, Gautier Capuçon, Jean-Guihen Queyras, Tedi Papavrami, and conductors Kazushi Ono, Jakub Hruša, Thomas Søndergård, Pierre Cao and Gast Waltzing.

Alongside its extensive repertoire and wide-ranging audiences, as well as the esteem of high calibre musicians, one further point links the OPL and the Philharmonie Luxembourg: the importance they both attach to innovative education and outreach activities for children, teenagers and adults. Since 2003, the orchestra’s own music education team ‘login:music’ has organised concerts and workshops for schools, children and families; DVD productions as well as ‹pocket concerts› in schools and hospitals. In addition, it prepares school classes for subscription concerts with music appreciation workshops, and it arranges the ‘dating:’ cycle, which draws on actors and multi-media tools for encounters with the works of selected composers.

 The Grand Duchy of Luxembourg and the OPL share a common spirit of openness towards Europe and the world. The 98 musicians hailing from some 20 different nations (two thirds from Luxembourg and its neighbour countries France, Germany and Belgium) are active throughout the Greater Region with numerous concerts and activities. Tours take the orchestra to many music venues in Europe (including Paris, Vienna, Berlin, Munich, Frankfurt, Salzburg, Brussels, Amsterdam, London, Athens, Prague, Naples, Rome and Moscow) as well as in Asia and the USA. OPL concerts are regularly broadcast by Luxembourg radio 100,7 and internationally by the European Broadcasting Union (EBU).

 The OPL is supported financially by the Ministry of Culture of the Grand Duchy and by the City of Luxembourg. Its partners are BGL BNP Paribas and HSBC as well as Arnold Kontz, Saint-Paul, Enovos, P&T, SOS Villages d’Enfants Monde, Deloitte and the Luxembourg Red Cross.