Orchestre de la Suisse Romande
Founded in 1918 by Ernest Ansermet, permanent conductor until 1967, the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande, with its 112 permanent musicians, gives subscription concerts in Geneva and Lausanne, the City of Geneva symphony concerts, the annual UN Day concert, as well as opera performances at the Grand Théâtre of Geneva. Its reputation has been built up over the years thanks to its historic recordings and its interpretation of 20th-century French and Russian repertoire.
The orchestra's Music and Artistic Director will be Jonathan Nott from the 2016-2017 season. Its Principal Guest Conductor is Japanese maestro Kazuki Yamada.
Under its founding conductor and subsequent music directors (Paul Kletzki 1967- 1970, Wolfgang Sawallisch 1970-1980, Horst Stein 1980-1985, Armin Jordan 1985-1997, Fabio Luisi 1997-2002, Pinchas Steinberg 2002-2005, Marek Janowski 2005-2012 and Neeme Järvi 2012-2015), the world-famous Orchestre de la Suisse Romande has been an active contributor to the history of music through the discovery or promotion of leading contemporary composers. Pieces by Claude Debussy, Igor Stravinsky, Darius Milhaud, Arthur Honegger, Frank Martin, Benjamin Britten, Heinz Holliger, Peter Eötvös, James MacMillan, Pascal Dusapin, Michael Jarrell and Richard Dubugnon have been premiered in Geneva by the OSR. One of its important missions is to support new orchestral music, especially by Swiss composers. The OSR is a partner of Pro Helvetia until 2017 for the project “Oeuvres suisses”.
From its very early days and in close collaboration with the Radio-Télévision Suisse Romande, the Orchestre de la Suisse Romande has been heard by millions of listeners around the world. The OSR made legendary recordings for Decca (over 100 discs). It has also recorded for around a dozen other labels and won major awards. The orchestra has now developed a privileged partnership with PentaTone, recording two to three CDs per season.
The OSR’s international tours have taken it to the most prestigious venues in Europe (Berlin, London, Vienna, Salzburg, Paris, Budapest and Amsterdam), Asia (Tokyo, Seoul, Beijing), as well as in major cities on the American continents (Boston, New York, San Francisco, Washington, São Paulo, Buenos Aires and Montevideo). During the 2011-2012 season, the OSR gave its first performances in Moscow and St Petersburg. In July 2014 the orchestra made a triumphant visit to Japan (Suntory Hall) and Seoul (SeongNam Arts Center) and in February 2015, it undertook a major US tour with Charles Dutoit and Nikolai Lugansky to the East and West Coasts. The OSR has been invited by many festivals, including Música de Canarias, the Lucerne Easter and Summer Festivals, the Festival de Radio France and Montpellier, the Menuhin Festival Gstaad and the Septembre Musical de Montreux.
The Orchestre de la Suisse Romande is supported by the Canton and City of Geneva, Radio-Télévision Suisse Romande, associations of Friends of the Orchestra and many sponsors and patrons. For the concerts in Lausanne, the OSR receives generous support from the Canton of Vaud.