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 204 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    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
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  • 2.
    Mahler: Orchestral Songs / Gerhaher, Nagano, Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 370133 Release Date: 10/08/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Gustav Mahler
    Performer:  Christian Gerhaher
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 3.
    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: $17.99
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  • 4.
    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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  • 5.
    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: $83.49
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  • 6.
    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: $13.99
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  • 7.
    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  ... 
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  • 8.
    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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  • 9.
    Magnificat - 500 Years Of Choral Masterworks [50-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001664502 Release Date: 04/10/2012   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Gregorio Allegri,  Antonio Lotti,  Orlando de Lassus,  Josquin Des Préz  ... 
    Performer:  Patrick Russill,  Marinella Pennicchi,  Michael Chance,  Mark Tucker  ... 
    Conductor:  Harry Christophers,  Paul McCreesh,  Stephen Cleobury,  Edward Wickham  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  The Sixteen,  Gabrieli Consort,  Gabrieli Players  ... 
    CD: $179.99
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  • 10.
    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: $18.49
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  • 11.
    Chopin: Piano Concerto No 1 /  Dutoit, Argerich
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 6027395 Release Date: 03/13/2012  
    Composer:  Frédéric Chopin
    Performer:  Martha Argerich
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 12.
    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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  • 13.
    Debussy: Pelleas et Melisande / Dutoit, Henry, Alliot-Lugaz, Cachemaille
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001615402 Release Date: 11/21/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Claude Debussy
    Performer:  Phillip Ens,  Didier Henry,  Colette Alliot-Lugaz,  Claudine Carlson  ... 
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
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  • 14.
    The Decca Sound - Highlights [5-CD Set]
    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  ... 
    On sale! $77.99
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  • 15.
    The Decca Sound [50-CD Set]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001619902 Release Date: 11/15/2011   Number of Discs: 50
    Composer:  Manuel de Falla,  Claude Debussy,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Enrique Granados  ... 
    Performer:  Teresa Berganza,  Alfredo Campoli,  Vladimir Ashkenazy,  Cecilia Bartoli  ... 
    Conductor:  Ernest Ansermet,  Ataulfo Argenta,  Anatole Fistoulari,  Vladimir Ashkenazy  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Suisse Romande Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra,  Philharmonia Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $175.49
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  • 16.
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 4783097 Release Date: 11/07/2011   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky
    Performer:  Chantal Juillet,  Guy Fouquet
    Conductor:  Charles Dutoit
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    On sale! $23.99
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  • 17.
    Daugherty: Fire & Blood, Flamingo, Ladder To The Moon /   Halffter,   Da Costa
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 4671957 Release Date: 10/25/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Michael Daugherty
    Performer:  Alexandre Da Costa
    Conductor:  Pedro Halffter
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra,  Montreal Symphony Orchestra Soloists
    CD: $18.99
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  • 18.
    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  ... 
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    CD: $39.99
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  • 19.
    Fete a la Francaise / Dutoit, Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    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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  • 20.
    In The Breath Of Time - Beethoven: Symphonies No 6 & 8 / Nagano, Montreal SO
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 792360 Release Date: 10/11/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $14.99
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  • 21.
    Beethoven Le Souffle Du Temps / Nagano
    Label: Imports   Catalog: 946943 Release Date: 09/13/2011  
    Composer:  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Conductor:  Kent Nagano
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    On sale! $38.99
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    $34.99
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  • 22.
    Martha Argerich Edition - Concertos
    Label: Emi 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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  • 23.
    The Sound Of Martha Argerich
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 94618 Release Date: 06/07/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Robert Schumann,  Frédéric Chopin,  Béla Bartók,  Sergei Prokofiev  ... 
    Performer:  Martha Argerich,  Sergei Nakariakov
    Conductor:  Alexandre Rabinovitch,  Charles Dutoit,  Alexander Vedernikov
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Orchestra della Svizzera Italiana,  Montreal Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $24.99
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  • 24.
    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
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  • 25.
    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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