Christian Leiber / ONP
The Orchestra


Paris Opera Orchestra

Being at one and the same time, one of the most youthful and one of the most venerable of French orchestras is rather thrilling. The Paris Opera Orchestra is young in terms of the average age of its musicians, thanks to recruitment over recent years. However this rejuvenation does not prevent it from assuming three hundred years of heritage going back to the foundation in 1669 of the Académie Royale de Musique.

Many things have changed since then and in particular since 1972 when the Paris Opera and Opéra-Comique orchestras merged. Today the 174 musicians perform at both the Opéra Bastille and the Palais Garnier. As a result their repertoire has been enlarged and unified. Indeed it is this transformation that has enabled the orchestra to establish its own front-ranking position, amongst the elite of French music-makers. In more or less thirty years they have covered an immense repertoire studded with masterpieces that they have had the chance of performing with great conductors like Lorin Maazel, Georges Prêtre, Zubin Mehta, Christoph von Dohnanyi, Claudio Abbado, Daniel Barenboim, Myung-Whun Chung, James Conlon, Pierre Boulez, Sylvain Cambreling, Semyon Bychkhov, Valery Gergiev...

All these experiences have profoundly renewed and deepened the personality of an orchestra enriched by the most demanding and perilous scores from a performer's point of view.

This personality is eloquently expressed in numerous recordings which have brought the orchestra recognition as one of the world's foremost. It is equally evident when the musicians perform in concerts or on tour abroad. Such concerts allow them to work with certain conductors they have already met in the pit in the even closer relationship of the symphonic repertoire. The musicians also learn to work more closely together through a chamber music season welcoming the key works of today's and yesterday's repertoires.

Since the 2009-2010 season, Philippe Jordan has been Music Director of the Paris Opera Orchestra with whom he has recorded Richard Strauss' Eine Alpensinfonie , which received a “CHOC de l'année-Classica”.