State Academic Symphony Orchestra of Russia “Evgeny Svetlanov"

On 5 October 2016 the State Academic Symphony Orchestra of Russia “Evgeny Svetlanov", one of the country’s oldest symphonic ensembles, celebrated its 80th anniversary. The State Orchestra debut performance took place eight decades ago, on 5 October 1936, at the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory.

During the years, the orchestra has been led by outstanding musicians such as Alexander Gauk (1936—1941), Natan Rakhlin (1941—1945), Konstantin Ivanov (1945—1965), and Evgeny Svetlanov (1965—2000). On 27 October 2005 the State Academic Symphony Orchestra was officialy named after E.F. Svetlanov. From 2000 to 2002 the orchestra was headed by Vasily Sinaisky, and from 2002 to 2011 by Mark Gorenstein. In 2011 Vladimir Jurowski, a world-renowned conductor, was appointed as the Artistic Director of the State Orchestra. Starting with season 2016/2017 Vasily Petrenko is the Principal Guest Conductor of the orchestra.

The orchestra has performed at the most prestigious venues, such as the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, Tchaikovsky Concert Hall, the Kennedy Center (Washington, DC), Musikverein (Vienna), the Royal Albert Hall (London).

The orchestra was conducted by N.Golovanov, K. Masur, E.Mravinsky, M.Rostropovich, I.Stravinsky, C.Dutoit, V.Gergiev, M.Jurowski, A.Lazarev, G.Rozhdestvensky, Y.Temirkanov, and other great musicians.

Among the outstanding soloists who have performed with the orchestra are singers I.Arkhipova, S.Lemeshev, E.Obraztsova, G.Vishnevskaya, M.Caballe, P.Domingo, A. Netrebko, D.Hvorostovsky; pianists V.Cliburn, E.Gilels, H.Neuhaus, R.Buchbinder, N.Petrov, S.Richter, M.Yuchida, B.Berezovsky, N.Lugansky, D.Matsuev, and E. Virsaladze; violinists L.Kogan, Y.Menuhin, D.Oistrakh, V.Spivakov, and M.Vengerov; violist Y.Bashmet; cellists M.Rostropovich, N.Gutman, A.Kniazev.
Ever since its first tour abroad in 1956 the orchestra regularly represents Russian culture in Australia, Austria, Belgium, Canada, China, the Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Germany, Hong Kong, Japan, Mexico, South Korea, Switzerland, Turkey, the US, and many other countries.

The orchestra’s discography includes hundreds of vinyl records and CDs released by leading Russian and foreign labels. The special place in this list belongs to the Anthology of the Russian Symphonic Music (conductor – Evgeny Svetlanov). Mezzo, Rossiya 1, and Kultura television companies, digital channel as well as Radio “Orpheus” also made recordings of a number of the ensemble’s concerts.

Lately the orchestra has performed at the the Mstislav Rostropovich Festival in Moscow, The Arts’ Square in Saint Petersburg, Crescendo in Pskov and Sochi. The orchestra performed Russian premieres of works by L. v. Beethoven – G.Mahler, V.Silvestrov, R.Schedrin, J.Taverner, A.Skryabin – A.Nemtin, C.Orff, G.Gladkov. Moreover, the ensemble took part in the XV International Tchaikovsky Competition and the I International competition for young pianists Grand Piano Competition. To close the season 2015/2016 the orchestra carried out the fourth annual educational concert cycle “Vladimir Jurowski conducts and narrates”. The orchestra visited the cities of Russia, Austria, Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Germany, Spain. Turkey and China.

The orchestra was granted the honorary title “academic” for the exceptional creative achievements in 1972 and received the Order of the Red Banner of Labor in 1986. In 2006 and 2011 the ensemble was rewarded with Presidential commendations.

© International Rostropovich Festival “Mstislav Rostropovich Week”, 2010 — 2021