Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra
BiographyTHE HRADEC KRÁLOVÉ PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA was established in 1978 as the Orchestra of the City of Hradec Králové, the body was renamed the Symphonic Orchestra Hradec Králové one year later and the State Symphonic Orchestra in 1987. Since the establishment of the Czech Republic (1st January 1993) the orchestra has borne the name The Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra, pointing to a historic continuity dating back to the Philharmonic Orchestra of the Sokol Movement in Hradec Králové (1921–65) and even as far back as the Philharmonic Union which has actively performed in the city since 1887. A major period of artistic development of the body is connected with the name of Professor František Vajnar who was the orchestra’s Principal Conductor continuously from 1991 until 2001 when he was recognized as the orchestra’s Principal Conductor of Honor. Ondřej Kukal held the position of the Principal Conductor of the body between 2001 and 2012, followed by Andreas Sebastian Weiser (2012–2018). Kaspar Zehnder has been the Principal Conductor of the Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra since the 2018–2019 season. The Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra has appeared on the stages of important concert halls in Europe (Grosser Musikvereinssaal in Vienna, Gewandhaus in Leipzig, Victoria Hall in Geneva, Queen Elizabeth Hall in Antwerp, Tonhalle in Düsseldorf, Neue Flora in Hamburg, KKL in Luzern et al.), performed in Belgium, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Austria, Spain and in Murten, Switzerland. Some of the concerts were broadcast on Czech Television, Television Noe and Czech Radio Prague. The interpretation quality achieved by the orchestra is evidenced by CD recordings for both national and foreign companies or for Czech Radio.
The Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra participates at major festivals (Prague Spring International Music Festival, Smetana’s Litomyšl International Opera Festival, International Music Festival Janáčkovy Hukvaldy and others). The Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra together with Czech Radio Vltava organizes the Music Forum Hradec Králové, a unique festival where Czech premieres of compositions by composers such as Schnittke, Penderecki, Henze, Kancheli, Gubaidulina, Corigliano, Tan Dun, Arvo Pärt and others have been presented. All the concerts of the Music Forum Hradec Králové are regularly broadcast by Czech Radio Vltava. The long-term focus of the Hradec Králové Philharmonic Orchestra is on the mingling of music genres and crossover concerts.