The Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, although a relatively small orchestra, is one of the most adventurous orchestras in Europe and one of the best orchestras in a country that has more symphonies per capita than any other country.
It was founded in 1927 as a small studio ensemble at Finnish Radio, the state-owned broadcasting organization. It reached symphony orchestra size in 1947, and now numbers seventy players. Hence, its repertoryRead more is primarily of pre-Romantic works and those of the Romantic and Modern eras that can be played well by smaller ensembles. It still premieres a number of new works commissioned by the boradcasting company each year.
Its conductors have included Toivo Haapenen, Paavo Berglund, Leif Segerstam, Okku Kamu, and Jukka-Pekka Saraste. Sakari Oramo became music director in the fall of 2003. Under Saraste tours became a regular practice for the orchestra, including travel to Asia, Vienna, London, and the Canary Islands.
In addition to all of the FRSO's concerts being broadcast, the orchestra has made over 80 recordings. In fact, the only surviving recording of Jean Sibelius conducting was the FRSO's first recording, made in 1939. Read less
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