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Philharmonia Orchestra

The Philharmonia Orchestra is resident at London's Southbank Centre and maintains residencies in Bedford, Leicester and Basingstoke. It tours nationally and internationally. Our funding subsidises concerts and supports core costs.

Funding awards

  • 2012-2013: £2,030,404
  • 2013-2014: £2,077,075
  • 2014-2015: £2,131,161

Video feed

Music at the University of Leicester: Philharmonia Orchestra Partnership

Student-led musical activity at the University of Leicester is supported by a long-standing partnership with the Philharmonia Orchestra. Coaching, one-to-one tuition, guidance and practical advice is provided by professional specialists to the various Music Association ensembles and music scholarship holders at the University. This film gives a flavour of the musical opportunities available, introduced by the students themselves.

Instrument: Double Bass

In this film, Michael Fuller introduces his instrument - the double bass. To learn more about the double bass visit Why not download our iPad app The Orchestra to learn even more? Visit for more information. "Have you seen the app called 'The Orchestra'? It is astonishing. For somebody who can't read music to learn how an orchestra functions, to be able to see from the perspective of a flute or a second violin, is really enlightening." - Sir John Eliot Gardiner, quoted in an interview by Richard Fairman, Financial Times, February 2014 The Philharmonia's Principal Bass's Chair is endowed by The Zvi and Ofra Meitar Family Fund. For more information on Chair Endowments, please visit:

Listening Guide: Copland's Billy the Kid

Animateur Paul Rissmann introduces Aaron Copland's exciting music for the ballet, Billy the Kid (1938). Discover how Copland created a popular style that incorporated jazz rhythms and fiddle tunes, resulting in a truly American sound - the perfect backdrop for a ballet about one of the Wild West's most infamous outlaws.

Listening Guide: Prokofiev's Lieutenant Kijé

Animateur Paul Rissmann recreates the story of Lieutenant Kijé, the Russian army administrator with a big imagination. This film introduces Sergei Prokofiev's music for his suite "Lieutenant Kijé," which originally formed the soundtrack of a 1934 film of the same name, directed by Aleksandr Faintsimmer. The soundtrack was arranged into a suite, and then into a ballet, and is now a familiar piece of the repertoire.

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Esa-Pekka Salonen, Kaija Saariaho and Olivier Latry introduce Saariaho's Maan varjot

Composing a work for organ and orchestra is not an easy task, but celebrated Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho was up to the challenge in her new piece, Maan varjot (Earth's Shadows). Discover the collaborative process behind this new commission with this film featuring Kaija Saariaho and Esa-Pekka Salonen in conversation. Noted French organist, Olivier Latry, contributes his perspective and put the newly restored Southbank Centre organ through its paces. Come hear the Philharmonia Orchestra, Esa-Pekka Salonen and Olivier Latry perform this new work in London on 26 June 2014, at Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall: Maan varjot was co-commissioned by the Philharmonia Orchestra, Southbank Centre, Orchestre Symphonique de Montréal and Orchestre National de Lyon.

The Firebird Project: Documentary

What happened when we brought together young musicians and dancers from southwest London to create their own version of Stravinsky's Firebird? Find out about this unique and moving project in our in-depth documentary. Featuring students from The Royal Ballet School, Feltham Community College, Richmond Park Academy, Richmond Music Trust and Hounslow Music Services. Click here to watch the final performance:

The Firebird Project: Performance Film

A film of the original choreography created for the 2013/14 Firebird Project featuring dancers from The Royal Ballet School, Feltham Community College and Richmond Park Academy. The music is performed by an orchestra of young musicians from Richmond Music Trust and Hounslow Music Services, with a few members of the Philharmonia Orchestra who helped coach the young musicians. For a documentary on the project:

Dvořák & Suk: A Journey with Jakub Hrůša

The composers Antonín Dvořák and his favourite pupil and son-in-law, Josef Suk, were both influenced by place and close relationships with loved ones. Travel to Prague with conductor Jakub Hrůša, a Prague resident, to uncover the stories behind Dvořák's Cello Concerto and Suk's rarely performed work, the Asrael Symphony. Part of the Bohemian Legends concert series in April & May 2014, at Royal Festival Hall and beyond, conducted by Jakub Hrůša:

Listening Guide: Leoš Janáček's Sinfonietta with Jakub Hrůša

The composer Leoš Janáček was an important promoter of cultural activity in the city where he spent most of his life: Brno, Moravia, Czech Republic. Czech conductor Jakub Hrůša, a Brno native, introduces us to Janáček and his city by using Janáček's spectacular Sinfonietta as a musical guide. Join us on this personal journey to discover the legacy of Leoš Janáček. Part of the Bohemian Legends series in April & May 2014, conducted by Jakub Hrůša:

BBC Frozen Planet in Concert

An event for all the family combining emotional and evocative live orchestral music with breathtaking HD images of the majestic and frozen wilderness of the Polar Regions from the landmark BBC television series Frozen Planet. Watch this video for a glimpse of what will be a special evening combining natural photography and the Philharmonia's live performance of George Fenton's powerful score.

BBC Frozen Planet in Concert - Extended Version

An event for all the family combining emotional and evocative live orchestral music with breathtaking HD images of the majestic and frozen wilderness of the Polar Regions from the landmark BBC television series Frozen Planet. Watch this video for a glimpse of what will be a special evening combining natural photography and the Philharmonia's live performance of George Fenton's powerful score.

RE-RITE: Be the Orchestra South West

RE-RITE is the Philharmonia Orchestra's digital installation based on The Rite of Spring. Through this combination of immersive video and interactive design visitors can experience what it's like to play with a live orchestra. From conducting with Esa-Pekka Salonen to following the score note by note with each instrument - RE-RITE takes you inside the orchestra. RE-RITE has toured in the UK, Portugal, Germany, Turkey and China. This summer the production will visit the South West. For more information on RE-RITE's upcoming dates visit

Listening Guide: Beethoven's Piano Concerto No. 5 "Emperor" (Nikolai Lugansky)

In this Listening Guide, pianist Nikolai Lugansky guides us through Beethoven's 5th Piano Concerto. Dubbed 'Emperor' by its English publisher, this was Beethoven's last piano concerto. Find out more in this film about what makes this hugely popular work special and forward-looking, complete with illustrative extracts from the work performed by Lugansky. For more information on the Philharmonia's upcoming performance of the work with Nikolai Lugansky, please visit

Interview with Christoph von Dohnányi (2007)

In this video -- one of the first ever produced by the Philharmonia's in-house team -- we interview the Philharmonia Orchestra's Honorary Conductor for Life, Christoph von Dohnányi. He talks about his early career and his passion for conducting, as well as working with young orchestras.

Philharmonia Players on Richard Strauss

Richard Strauss and his compositions have featured prominently throughout the history of the Philharmonia Orchestra. Meet some of the Philharmonia players in this behind-the-scenes video and find out what it is that makes him stand out for them.

Christmas Card 2013: In the Bleak Midwinter (Brass Quintet)

Season's Greetings from the Philharmonia Orchestra. We celebrate this year with a brass quintet of Philharmonia players, playing an arrangement of Gustav Holst's carol 'In the Bleak Midwinter', arranged by Toby Street. Why not send the Philharmonia Christmas Card to your friends? Visit to find out more.

re-rite: Elbphilharmonie, Hamburg 2013

A film created by the Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, documenting a groundbreaking inception of the re-rite project which took place in 2013, set in a multi-storey car park which forms part of the state-of-the-art concert hall currently under construction in the iconic Hamburg docks. Hear from visitors to the exhibition, and Philharmonia players and staff, as well as workshop leaders of the various music and dance activities which formed part of the broader re-rite programme.

In Performance: Peter Jablonski plays Chopin, Mazurka, Op. 17 No. 4

Pianist Peter Jablonski plays the last of the Op. 17 Mazurkas. In 3/4 time, and marked "Lento, ma non troppo", this is one of Chopin's more popular Mazurkas. The mazurka is originally a Polish folk dance.

In Performance: Peter Jablonski plays Debussy, Images I, Reflets dans l'eau

Peter Jablonski plays Debussy's "Reflets dans l'eau", the first of three pieces for the piano from his first volume of Images. "Reflets dans l'eau" is an example of the new tone colours Debussy discovered for the piano in this part of his life. Although he later refined his style, this piece is among Debussy's greater achievements on the instrument.

Profile: Sunwook Kim, Piano

In this archive video from 2010, we meet pianist Sunwook Kim as he prepares for a performance of Schumann's Piano Concerto with the Philharmonia Orchestra. As well as footage from rehearsals, Kim discusses his love of music, and life as a pianist in London.

Esa-Pekka Salonen -- Celebrating 30 years conducting the Philharmonia Orchestra

In this film, Philharmonia members past and present tell the story of how a last-minute decision by the Orchestra's management 30 years ago ignited what would go on to be a long-lasting relationship between Esa-Pekka Salonen and the Philharmonia, firstly as Principal Guest Conductor, and, since 2008, as Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor.

Witold Lutosławski - A Polish Life

In this feature-length biopic, Series Advisor Steven Stucky and Principal Conductor and Philharmonia Orchestra Artistic Advisor Esa-Pekka Salonen travel to Poland to the explore the life and works of Polish composer Witold Lutosławski, from his early life, his struggle for survival in Warsaw during the Second World War, the Stalinist period, and finally into his latter and most mature works. This film was released as part of the Philharmonia Orchestra's series Woven Words: "Music begins where words end". Explore the series' digital resources at

Amaan Ali Khan introduces the Sarod

Sarod player Amaan Ali Khan guides us through the construction, techniques and performance on his instrument - the Sarod.

London Mela 2013 in Gunnersbury Park

The Philharmonia Orchestra were delighted to be invited to the Classical Stage at London Mela 2013, to perform Ustad Amjad Ali Khan's composition 'Samaagam', played on the sarod by his two sons Amaan and Ayaan. In this film we speak with the two brothers before their performance, as well as with conductor David Murphy, who spent a considerable amount of time in Delhi with the composer. We also hear from the Mela's Artistic Director Ajay Chhabra, on the history of the Mela and the continuing relationship with the Philharmonia.

The Making of RE-RITE: Be the Orchestra (Deutsch Untertitel)

A documentary on the making of the Philharmonia Orchestra's immersive digital installation project, RE-RITE: Be the Orchestra. Since its première in 2009 at the Bargehouse, London, RE-RITE has toured within the UK as well as internationally to Portugal, Germany, China and Turkey. For more information on RE-RITE please visit:

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Contact details

6th Floor, The Tower Building, 11
York Road

51.503319, -0.11308

  • 51.503319 -0.11308

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