The Norwegian Radio Orchestra

The Norwegian Radio Orchestra, with its principal conductor Miguel Harth-Bedoya, is the orchestra that practically everyone living in Norway know and cherish.

Given the orchestra’s ability to and enthusiasm in maintaining an extraordinary repertoire diversity, they are frequent collaborators for a wide range of music events such as Ultima – Oslo Contemporary Music Festival, Oslo World Music Festival, various jazz festivals a.o. But the national and international classical music heritage will always remain the main volume of the orchestra’s projects and priorities. Well illustrated by Miguel Harth-Bedoya taking the post as principal conductor from August 2013.

The Norwegian Radio Orchestras history is also the history of Norwegian broadcasting and therefore represents our own cultural history. During the tenure of its first Principal Conductor, the legendary Øivind Bergh, the Norwegian Radio Orchestra won great popularity in Norway for its programming of entertainment music and light classics. Since that time the orchestra has steadily expanded its repertoire and its international reputation.

Sverre Bruland, Principal Conductor 1976-1988, established the orchestra’s commitment to presenting contemporary Norwegian music; while Avi Ostrowsky, Music Director and Chief Conductor from 1989-1992, successfully steered the orchestra’s programming towards a more international and challenging repertoire.

From 1994 to 2002 Ari Rasilainen oversaw a continuing artistic development and an increasing number of public concerts, a work continued by the Norwegian Conductor Rolf Gupta from 2003 – 2005 and the Danish conductor Thomas Søndergård from 2009 to 2012.

The orchestra has enjoyed enormous success over the past years, harvesting critical acclaim. Our quality is also to be seen in the recruitment where we have some of the best young musicians from both Norway and abroad.

In the past years the orchestra has collaborated with international musicians and conductors such as Mario Venzago, Juaño Mena, Kees Bakels, Mikail Jurowski, Anna Netrebko, Truls Mørk, Augustin Hadelich, Yo-Yo Ma, Sarah Chang, René Fleming, as well as the privilege of performing every year at the Nobel Peace Prize Concert.

The orchestra handpicks its conductors, focusing on their suitability for the chosen repertoire and nature of the event/arrangement. The Norwegian Radio Orchestra is well known for using Norwegian conductors, soloists, artists and arrangers to a much larger degree than the other orchestras.

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