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Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra

Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra is one of the oldest symphony orchestras in the world. It is now nominated to Gramophone Orchestra of the Year 2020.

The Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra (BFO) is one of the oldest orchestras in the world, having been founded in 1765. Edvard Grieg had a close relationship with the orchestra and was its artistic director during the years 1880-82. Edward Gardner has served as Chief Conductor since October 2015, and his contract is now extended through 2023.

The orchestra has a busy concert schedule, a substantial outreach programme and strong international presence through tours, recordings and the concert streaming service BergenPhiLive. It’s principal concert venue at home in Bergen is the Grieg Hall (Grieghallen), where it also plays at Bergen National Opera’s productions.

Among the successful collaborations is the highly acclaimed concert version of Britten’s Peter Grimes, directed by BNO’s Vera Rostin Wexelsen: After the premiere spring 2017 at Bergen International Festival, it visited Edinburgh International Festival. Autumn 2019 the production travelled to The Norwegian Ballett & Opera in Oslo, and also to Royal Festival Hall in London. A studio recording of the same work, with tenor Stuart Skelton in the title role, was released on Chandos Records this autumn (2020):

– The cast, chorus, orchestra, and conductor share a cohesive vision here. Together they highlight the tragedies and ambiguities of the plot, which are powerfully convincing and intensely engaging, sometimes terrifying. A must-have recording for any Britten or opera aficionado. (The Classical Review, September 2020)