WDR symphony orchestra

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Hans Rosbaud during a rehearsal with the symphony orchestra in the large broadcasting hall of the Rundfunkhaus (1954)

The WDR Sinfonieorchester is a symphony orchestra in Cologne . It was known as the Kölner Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester (KRSO) until the 1990s and, alongside the WDR Rundfunkchor , the WDR Funkhausorchester and the WDR Big Band , is one of the ensembles of West German Radio .


The WDR Sinfonieorchester was founded in 1947 on Nordwestdeutscher Rundfunk (NWDR) and played under the direction of Karl Böhm , Fritz Busch , Herbert von Karajan , Erich Kleiber , Otto Klemperer , Dimitri Mitropoulos , Georg Solti , Lorin Maazel , Claudio Abbado . The orchestra is particularly known for performing 20th century music; some composers who have written commissioned works for the orchestra are Luciano Berio , Hans Werner Henze , Mauricio Kagel , Krzysztof Penderecki , Igor Stravinski , Karlheinz Stockhausen and Bernd Alois Zimmermann . In the 1950s and the first half of the 1960s, the production of entertaining classical music was in the hands of the conductor Franz Marszalek . Marszalek made numerous recordings with the orchestra, including many rarities.

The WDR Symphony Orchestra made regular guest appearances in all European countries, in North and South America and in Asia.

For the 2019/2020 season, the Romanian conductor and violinist Cristian Măcelaru became chief conductor of the WDR Symphony Orchestra.

Chief conductor


  • 2003: Prix ​​International du Disque for the complete recording of the symphonies by Dmitri Shostakovich under the direction of Rudolf Barschai
  • 2006: ECHO Klassik for the recording of Daphne by Richard Strauss
  • 2010: Disc of the Year from BBC Music Magazine (expert jury and magazine readers) for the inclusion of the Wagner opera Lohengrin .
  • 2012: ECHO Klassik 2012, category “Choral work recording of the year (20th / 21st century)” for the recording of György Ligeti's Requiem .

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. Cristian Măcelaru becomes the new chief conductor of the WDR Symphony Orchestra ( Memento from May 4, 2018 in the Internet Archive ), WDR Sinfonieorchester press release, May 2, 2018, accessed on July 14, 2020