With its approximately 80 concerts in the festival hall of the Dresden Kulturpalast, the Dresdener Philharmonie (Dresden Philharmonic) essentially characterizes the cultural life of the city. The concerts of the orchestra, which emerged the central attraction for thousands of Dresdners and for the guests of the metropolis on the Elbe, so called Florence on the Elbe.
Guest conductors and soloists play together with the orchestra in its home town. For their part, the philharmonic orchestra is sought-after on the concert stages world-wide. Tours have so far taken the members of the Dresdener Philharmonie to Japan, Israel, South America and the USA.
Dresdener Philharmonie traces its formation back to the formal opening of the first concert hall on Novemver 29, 1870 in Dresden. This marked a new stage, a change away from the aristocracy to the performing of concerts for general public. From 1885, the then "Gewerbehausorchester" gave philharmonic concerts in Dresden, which earned them the title "Dresden Philharmonic Orchestra" in 1915.
In the past, Johannes Brahms, Tschaikovsky, Dvorak and Strauss, amongst others, have conducted their works with the orchestra. Distingiushed persons such as Hans von Bülow, Anton Rubinstein, Bruno Walter, Fritz Busch, Arthur Nikisch, Hermann Scherchen, Erich Kleiber, Willem Mengelberg have conducted the orchestra. Previous Music Directors have included, amongst others, Paul van Kempen, Carl Schuricht, as well as Heinz Bongartz, Horst Foerster, Kurt Masur, Günther Herbig and Herbert Kegel, and Jörg-Peter Weigle. After Michel Plasson, who had been conductor from 1994 to 1999, Marek Janowski is now leading the Dresdener Philharmonie as the new Music Director.
After 1945, conductors such as Otto Klemperer, Karl Ancerl, Vaclav Neumann, Seiji Ozawa, Klaus Tennstedt ... gave guest performances with the Dresdener Philharmonie, as well as soloists such as Emil Gilels, Wilhelm Kempff, Elly Ney, Gidon Kremer, Ruggiero Ricci, Henryk Szeryng, Pierre Fournier, Mstislaw Rostropovich, Aurèle Nicolet, Maurice André, Bruno-Leonardo Gelber, Rudolf Buchbinder, Frank Peter Zimmermann, Heinrich Schiff, Mischa Maisky, Christian Zacharias ...