Montreal Symphony Orchestra

Biography

Active: 1934 - ; Montreal, Quebec, Canada
The Montreal Symphony Orchestra (MSO), equally known as l'Orchestre symphonique de Montréal (OSM), was established in 1934. Over the years it has grown in stature to become, particularly under the long and fruitful leadership of Charles Dutoit, one of the world's outstanding orchestras.

The MSO was founded by a group of ambitious local music lovers in the cultural center and largest city of Quebec. In the beginning, the orchestra
Read more succeeded in securing the financial support of the provincial government, a vital element to its longevity. The first concert took place in January 1935, and the program included, among the classics, a work by Canadian composer, Calixa Lavallée. Soon after, Wilfrid Pelletier, originally from Montreal but then working at the Metropolitan Opera in New York, was appointed the first Music Director. In his five years, Pelletier launched a matinée series for young people, and outdoor summer concerts on Mount Royal, the wooded hill that dominates the city (and gives it its name). In 1940, Pelletier was succeeded by Désiré Defauw, and Pelletier is commemorated to this day by having the orchestra's concert hall at the Place-des-Arts complex named after him.

Throughout the next couple of decades, various well-known conductors visited Montreal to work with the orchestra, including Pierre Monteux, Bruno Walter, Leonard Bernstein, and even Igor Stravinsky. In 1957, composer-conductor Igor Markevitch became music director, and it was during his tenure that the orchestra gained full professional status. He was succeeded by the young Zubin Mehta, who took the MSO on its first European tour. Franz-Paul Decker took over in 1967, followed briefly by Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, and then, in 1977, by Charles Dutoit.

It has been under the direction of this Swiss-born Dutoit that the MSO has achieved true international status. Dutoit has taken the orchestra on numerous tours throughout North and South America, Europe, and Asia. Since 1982, the MSO has given acclaimed annual performances at Carnegie Hall, and has also appeared at the Hollywood Bowl and Tanglewood. In addition, Dutoit's recording contract with Decca/London has resulted in a long list of award-winning discs. The MSO's 1984 recording of Ravel's Bolero went platinum; other issues have garnered Grammy awards and a number of other prizes. Their series of Berlioz recordings have been particularly acclaimed.

The MSO continues to receive provincial and national support for its operations, and it serves as a major cultural ambassador, not only for Montreal, but for Quebec and Canada as well. At the same time, the local population remains dedicated to the orchestra, and the annual performances at the historic Notre Dame Basilica in Old Montreal are popular with both young and old. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 147 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Charles Dutoit: The Montreal Years
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002449102 Release Date: 02/19/2016   Number of Discs: 35
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Ernest Chausson,  Manuel de Falla  ... 
    Performer:  Pascal Rogé,  Timothy Hutchins,  Beverly Hoch,  Stanford Olsen  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Montreal Symphony Chorus
    CD: $113.49
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  • 2.
    Saint-Saens, Moussa, Saariaho: Symphonie et Creations pour Orgue et Orchestre
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 28779 Release Date: 10/30/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns,  Samy Moussa,  Kaija Saariaho
    Performer:  Olivier Latry,  Jean-Willy Kunz
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 3.
    Saint-Saens: Complete Violin Concertos / Wan, Nagano, Montreal Symphony
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 28770 Release Date: 10/30/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Camille Saint-Saëns
    Performer:  Andrew Wan
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 4.
    Manuel de Falla - When the Fire Burns, Nights in the Gardens of Spain
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2061108 Release Date: 05/26/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Manuel de Falla
    Performer:  Alicia De Larrocha,  Teresa Berganza,  Nicanor Zabaleta,  Justino Diaz
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    DVD: $24.99
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  • 5.
    Kyung Wha Chung - Complete Decca Recordings [19 CDs & 1 DVD]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002217700 Release Date: 01/06/2015   Number of Discs: 20
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky,  Felix Mendelssohn,  Jean Sibelius,  Fritz Kreisler  ... 
    Performer:  Myung Whun Chung,  Phillip Moll,  Radu Lupu,  Myung-Wha Chung  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  André Previn,  Rudolf Kempe,  Sir Georg Solti  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $66.99
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  • 6.
    Szymanowski: Symphonies 2 & 3  / Dorati
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 002141702 Release Date: 09/16/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Karol Szymanowski
    Performer:  Ryszard Karczykowski,  Chantal Juillet
    Conductor:  Antal Doráti,  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Detroit Symphony Orchestra,  Kenneth Jewell Chorale,  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $14.99
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  • 7.
    Berlioz Masterworks / Dutoit, Montreal [17-CD Collector's Edition]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001915202 Release Date: 10/22/2013   Number of Discs: 17
    Composer:  Hector Berlioz,  Dimitri Bortniansky,  Johann Paul A. Martini
    Performer:  Françoise Pollet,  Deborah Voigt,  Gino Quilico,  Jean-Phillipe Courtis  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Montreal Symphony Chorus
    CD: $51.49
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  • 8.
    Martha Argerich - 5 Classic Albums
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 844412 Release Date: 07/09/2013   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Sergei Prokofiev,  Béla Bartók,  Frédéric Chopin,  Alberto Ginastera  ... 
    Performer:  Martha Argerich,  Renaud Capuçon,  Mischa Maisky
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Alexandre Rabinovitch
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana
    CD: $22.99
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  • 9.
    Debussy: Printemps, La Boite a Joujoux, Children's Corner / Dutoit
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 444386 Release Date: 01/25/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Pierre-Vincent Plante,  Ted Baskin,  James Earl Barnes
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 10.
    Ravel Complete Edition [14-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001728702 Release Date: 10/09/2012   Number of Discs: 14
    Composer:  Maurice Ravel,  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  François-Joël Thiollier,  Jean-Yves Thibaudet,  Pierre-Laurent Aimard,  Ivo Pogorelich  ... 
    Conductor:  Simon Rattle,  Charles Dutoit,  Ernest Ansermet,  John Eliot Gardiner  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Melos Ensemble London,  Nash Ensemble,  Melos String Quartet Stuttgart  ... 
    CD: $82.99
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  • 11.
    Debussy: La Mer / Dutoit, Orchestre Symphonique De Montreal
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001708702 Release Date: 07/31/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Timothy Hutchins
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Montréal Symphony Women's Chorus
    CD: $14.99
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  • 12.
    Claire De Lune - Debussy Favorites
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001675502 Release Date: 05/01/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  James Earl Barnes,  Timothy Hutchins,  Vera Badings,  Zoltán Kocsis  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Bernard Haitink,  Ernest Ansermet
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra,  Suisse Romande Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $21.99
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  • 13.
    Human Misery, Human Love - Beethoven: Symphony No  9 / Nagano, Montreal Symphony
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 191944 Release Date: 04/10/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 14.
    Rachmaninov: Piano Concerto No 4; Scriabin: Promethee / Lefevre, Nagano, Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    Label: Analekta   Catalog: 29288 Release Date: 04/10/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sergei Rachmaninov,  Alexander Scriabin
    Performer:  Alain Lefčvre
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 15.
    Berlioz: Les Troyens / Dutoit, Lakes, Pollet, Voigt, Ainsley
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001616402 Release Date: 11/21/2011   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Hector Berlioz
    Performer:  Françoise Pollet,  Deborah Voigt,  Gino Quilico,  Jean-Phillipe Courtis  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Montreal Symphony Chorus
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    CD: $25.99
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  • 16.
    The Decca Sound - Highlights
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001620002 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Giacomo Puccini,  Béla Bartók,  Benjamin Britten,  Sergei Rachmaninov  ... 
    Performer:  Montserrat Caballé,  Luciano Pavarotti,  Dame Joan Sutherland,  Renata Tebaldi  ... 
    Conductor:  Zubin Mehta,  Franco Capuana,  István Kertész,  Benjamin Britten  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  London Philharmonic Orchestra,  John Alldis Choir,  Wandsworth School Boys' Choir  ... 
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  • 17.
    Stravinsky: Complete Ballets & Symphonies / Ashkenazy, Chailly, Dutoit [7-CD Collector's Edition]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001605302 Release Date: 10/18/2011   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky
    Performer:  Anna Caterina Antonacci,  Pietro Ballo,  William Shimell,  Olli Mustonen  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Riccardo Chailly,  Bernard Haitink
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Berlin Radio Symphony Orchestra,  Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra  ... 
    Recommendation
    CD: $40.99
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  • 18.
    Fete a la Francaise / Dutoit, Montreal
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 421527 Release Date: 10/17/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Paul Dukas,  Emmanuel Chabrier,  Ambroise Thomas,  Camille Saint-Saëns  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 19.
    Martha Argerich Edition - Concertos
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 94031 Release Date: 06/07/2011   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin,  Sergei Prokofiev,  Béla Bartók,  Ludwig van Beethoven  ... 
    Performer:  Martha Argerich,  Renaud Capuçon,  Mischa Maisky,  Sergei Nakariakov  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Alexandre Rabinovitch,  Alexander Vedernikov,  Mikhail Pletnev
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana,  Italian Switzerland Radio/TV Orchestra
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    CD: $19.99
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  • 20.
    Beethoven - Gods, Heroes And Men / Nagano, Orchestre Symphonique De Montreal
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 85737 Release Date: 05/24/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $14.99
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  • 21.
    Stravinsky: Symphony In C, Symphony In 3 Movements / Dutoit
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 436474 Release Date: 12/07/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 22.
    Best Chopin 50
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 31666 Release Date: 10/12/2010   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Stephen Kovacevich,  Ingrid Fliter,  Dmitri Alexeev,  Dinu Lipatti  ... 
    Conductor:  Stanislaw Skrowaczewski,  Paul Kletzki,  Charles Dutoit,  Jerzy Maksymiuk
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Society of the Conservatory Concerts Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra,  Montreal Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $13.99
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  • 23.
    Stravinsky: Orchestral Works / Dutoit, Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    Label: Newton Classics   Catalog: 8802013 Release Date: 07/27/2010   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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    CD: $27.49
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  • 24.
    Ravel: Bolero; Chabrier: Espana; Rimsky-Korsakov: Capriccio Espagnol / Lopez-Cobos
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 425084 Release Date: 06/09/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Manuel de Falla,  Joaquin Turina,  Emmanuel Chabrier,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit,  Jesús Lopez-Cobos,  Sir Georg Solti
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    ArkivCD $16.99
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  • 25.
    Tchaikovsky: The Nutcracker, Etc / Charles Dutoit, Montreal
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 440477 Release Date: 06/09/2010   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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