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BBC Philharmonic


  • The BBC Philharmonic has its roots in the city of Manchester, since it’s foundation in 1934 as the BBC Northern Orchestra. In 1982, soon after moving to the BBC’s new building on Oxford Road in Manchester, it changed its name to the BBC Philharmonic. In 2011 the BBC moved many of its major departments to a new centre at Salford Quays.

    Intermusica's relationship with the BBC Philharmonic reaches back over the last two decades, with significant tours and close partnership on international touring. Concerts have included New Year gala concerts in China with Vassily Sinaisky and a highly prestigious residency at the Vienna Konzerthaus in 2013 with HK Gruber. 

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  • The BBC Philharmonic is based at MediaCityUK in Salford and performs an annual season of concerts at Manchester’s Bridgewater Hall, as well as regular concerts in Hanley, Leeds, Kendal and other venues across the north of England. As one of the BBC’s six performing groups the majority of the orchestra’s concerts are broadcast on BBC Radio 3.

    The BBC Philharmonic is supported by Salford City Council, enabling the orchestra to build active links in the local area through a busy learning and community programme.

    Juanjo Mena is Chief Conductor of the BBC Philharmonic. Hailing from the Basque region of Spain he has brought his passion for large-scale choral works and the music of his home country to the orchestra since taking up the post in 2011 and his performances have received rave reviews.

    As an internationally-renowned orchestra, the BBC Philharmonic regularly tours in Europe and Asia. In 2011 the orchestra’s tour of Japan was cut short when the catastrophic earthquake and tsunami hit the country; last year they returned to complete the tour dates that were cancelled.


Past tour
HK Gruber residency in Vienna
Europe, March 2013
Celebrating Gruber’s 70th birthday and the 100th anniversary of the Konzerthaus, the BBC Philharmonic’s residency marks the special relationship that has established between composer, orchestra and concert hall.

Gruber is currently Composer and Conductor in residence with the BBC Philharmonic, conducting several concerts every season since his appointment in 2009. The concerts in Vienna on this tour also feature two of Gruber’s own compositions.

The first concert on 18 March features music by Gruber, Schwertsik and Stravinsky. Opening with Gruber’s Northwind Pictures and Schwertsik’s Nachtmusiken, the concert’s second half features a special performance of Stravinsky’s Oedipus Rex with a stellar cast featuring Ian Bostridge as Oedipus and Angelika Kirchslager as Jocasta as well as Intermusica bass Matthew Best as Tiresias.

The second concert on 19 March also features Ian Bostridge, who will be joined on stage by horn player Stefan Dohr for a performance of Britten’s Serenade for Tenor, Horn and Strings. The concert also features Gruber’s Dancing in the Dark, James MacMillan’s The Sacrifice: Three Interludes, and the Overture and Suite: Three Dance Episodes from Bernstein’s On the Town. Bernstein’s Overture to On the Town was only recently discovered in archives and this performance of the piece will mark its Austrian premiere.

Gruber and the BBC Philharmonic also perform together the previous week on 13 March at the Bridgewater Hall in Manchester. In preparation for the two concerts in Vienna, the concert will also feature the MacMillan, the Britten and the Stravinsky with the same cast that will be travelling to Austria.


18 March 2013
Konzerthaus, Vienna

19 March 2013
Konzerthaus, Vienna

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Past tour
Germany with Gianandrea Noseda
Europe, May 2010
Intermusica brings back the BBC Philharmonic and Chief Conductor Gianandrea Noseda to Germany following their successful visit to in 2006, for an extensive tour to cities including Cologne, Stuttgart and Essen.

The Orchestra will be joined by pianist Rudolf Buchbinder and violinist Vilde Frang, Young EMI Artist of Year in 2010, for two programmes including Rachmaninov’s and Schumann’s first symphonies, Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto and Brahms Piano Concerto No.2. The tour follows a busy spring for the Orchestra who have been at the forefront of the Mahler in Manchester festival, celebrating the 150th anniversary of Mahler’s birth.


14 May 2010
Wiesbaden Kurhaus

16 May 2010
Mannheim Rosengarten

17 May 2010
Kölner Philharmonie

18 May 2010
Stuttgarter Liederhalle

19 May 2010
Aachen Eurogress

20 May 2010
Philharmonie Essen 


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Past tour
China debut
Asia, December 2008
The BBC Philharmonic Orchestra and Chief Guest Conductor Vassily Sinaisky travel to Beijing for two New Year Gala concerts in unique venues in the city.

The orchestra and Sinaisky perform at the Great Hall of the People, situated on the edge of Tian'anmen Square, marking the Orchestra and Vassily Sinaisky’s debut performance in China. The varied orchestral programme includes music by Tchaikovsky and Dvořák as well as traditional Chinese works.


30 December 2008
Beijing National Aquatic Centre, Beijing 

31 December 2008
Great Hall of the People, Beijing 

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Past tour
Japan and Korea with Noseda
Asia, March 2008
Intermusica tours the BBC Philharmonic on an extensive tour of Japan and South Korea taking in four cities including a debut in Seoul.

Under the direction of Gianandrea Noseda, who brought the Orchestra to Japan in 2004, they perform in Japan in seven different venues across four cities including Tokyo and Osaka.

Whilst their inaugural tour of Korea includes concerts in Seoul Arts Center, Tongyeong, Daejeon, Gimhae and Gumi. With Hilary Hahn as soloist, programmes will include Stravinksy's Divertimento from A Fairy's Kiss, Tchaikovsky's Symphony No.6, Sibelius' Violin Concerto and Beethoven's Symphony No.7.


12 March 2008
Joetsu Bunka Kaikan, Tokyo

13 March 2008
Suntory Hall, Tokyo

14 March 2008
Joetsu Bunka Kaikan, Tokyo

15 March 2008
Festival Hall, Osaka

16 March 2008
Minato Mirai Hall, Yokohama 

18 March 2008
Tokyo Opera City, Tokyo

19 March 2008
Acros Fukuoka Hall, Fukuoka

21 March 2008
Tongyeung Citizen’s Center, Tokgyeung

22 March 2008
Daejeon Culture and Arts Centre, Daejeon

23 March 2008
Gimhae Arts & Sports Center, Gimhae

25 March 2008
Seoul Arts Center, Seoul

26 March 2008
Gumi Art Center, Gumi  


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Future tour
Bucharest, 2018
Europe, November 2018


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Peter Ansell
Director / Head of International Touring
+44 20 7608 9930