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BBC Symphony Chorus

BBC Symphony Chorus

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The BBC Symphony Chorus is a British
British people
The British are citizens of the United Kingdom, of the Isle of Man, any of the Channel Islands, or of any of the British overseas territories, and their descendants...

 amateur chorus
A choir, chorale or chorus is a musical ensemble of singers. Choral music, in turn, is the music written specifically for such an ensemble to perform.A body of singers who perform together as a group is called a choir or chorus...

 based in London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

. It is the dedicated chorus for the BBC Symphony Orchestra, though it performs with other national and international orchestras.

Originally founded in 1928 as the National Chorus it became the BBC Chorus in 1932. Its earliest concerts included the UK premiere of Mahler's Eighth Symphony and first performances of works by Bartók, Holst and Stravinsky under such conductors as Adrian Boult
Adrian Boult
Sir Adrian Cedric Boult CH was an English conductor. Brought up in a prosperous mercantile family he followed musical studies in England and at Leipzig, Germany, with early conducting work in London for the Royal Opera House and Sergei Diaghilev's ballet company. His first prominent post was...

, Arturo Toscanini
Arturo Toscanini
Arturo Toscanini was an Italian conductor. One of the most acclaimed musicians of the late 19th and 20th century, he was renowned for his intensity, his perfectionism, his ear for orchestral detail and sonority, and his photographic memory...

 and Bruno Walter
Bruno Walter
Bruno Walter was a German-born conductor. He is considered one of the best known conductors of the 20th century. Walter was born in Berlin, but is known to have lived in several countries between 1933 and 1939, before finally settling in the United States in 1939...

. It changed name again in 1935 to become the BBC Choral Society and then in 1977 took on its current name of the BBC Symphony Chorus. Although normally associated with the BBC Symphony Orchestra
BBC Symphony Orchestra
The BBC Symphony Orchestra is the principal broadcast orchestra of the British Broadcasting Corporation and one of the leading orchestras in Britain.-History:...

, the Chorus does perform independently. Venues regularly visited include the Barbican Centre
Barbican Centre
The Barbican Centre is the largest performing arts centre in Europe. Located in the City of London, England, the Centre hosts classical and contemporary music concerts, theatre performances, film screenings and art exhibitions. It also houses a library, three restaurants, and a conservatory...

 and the Royal Albert Hall
Royal Albert Hall
The Royal Albert Hall is a concert hall situated on the northern edge of the South Kensington area, in the City of Westminster, London, England, best known for holding the annual summer Proms concerts since 1941....

. As the resident chorus at the BBC Proms, the Symphony Chorus usually performs both on the first and last night. In 2002 it performed at Buckingham Palace
Buckingham Palace
Buckingham Palace, in London, is the principal residence and office of the British monarch. Located in the City of Westminster, the palace is a setting for state occasions and royal hospitality...

, as part of the Prom at the Palace
Prom at the Palace
The Prom at the Palace was a classical music concert held in London in 2002. The event was in commemoration of the Golden Jubilee of Elizabeth II. It was held at Buckingham Palace on 1 June 2002 forming part of the Golden Jubilee Weekend. It was the classical equivalent of the Party at the Palace,...

 which marked the Queen's golden jubilee
Golden Jubilee
A Golden Jubilee is a celebration held to mark a 50th anniversary.- In Thailand :King Bhumibol Adulyadej, the world's longest-reigning monarch, celebrated his Golden Jubilee on 9 June 1996.- In the Commonwealth Realms :...

 celebrations. It makes regular recordings for classical music station BBC Radio 3
BBC Radio 3
BBC Radio 3 is a national radio station operated by the BBC within the United Kingdom. Its output centres on classical music and opera, but jazz, world music, drama, culture and the arts also feature. The station is the world’s most significant commissioner of new music, and its New Generation...


The Chorus is directed by Stephen Jackson, who was appointed in 1989. Sir Andrew Davis
Andrew Davis (conductor)
Sir Andrew Frank Davis CBE is a British conductor.Born in Ashridge, Hertfordshire to Robert J. Davis and his wife Florence J. née Badminton, Davis grew up in Chesham, Buckinghamshire, and in Watford. Davis attended Watford Boys' Grammar School, where he studied classics in his sixth form years...

, conductor of the BBC Symphony Orchestra from 1989 to 2000, is President of the Chorus.

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