The London Chamber Orchestra (= LCO) is the longest established professional chamber orchestra in the UK. Based in London, LCO has a residency at St John's, Smith Square in Westminster. The LCO was founded in 1921 by Anthony Bernard and was premiered at the London Home of Viscountess Nancy Astor.
LCO receives no grants and is not supported by any public body. Instead, the orchestra depends upon the enthusiasm of its audiences and on the support of a long line of distinguished and enlightened corporate sponsors and donors. These include HSBC, Waitrose, Petro-Canada, CNN, Lazard and Endeavour.
LCO has given more than 100 UK premieres, including works by Arnold, de Falla, Gabriel Fauré, Janácek, Ravel, Ralph Vaughan Williams, Igor Stravinsky, and, most recently, Graham Fitkin and James Francis Brown. Last season LCO premiered Sir Peter Maxwell Davies's The Golden Rule, written to mark HM The Queen’s 80th birthday. LCO performed at Buckingham Palace at the invitation of HRH The Prince of Wales in April 2006, and has performed for HM The Queen at Kew Palace. LCO is orchestra in residence for the Hong Kong International Piano Competition continuing in October 2008. In addition to touring Asia, the LCO tours across the UK, Europe and the USA.
The LCO's principal conductor, Christopher Warren-Green has held the position of Music Director since 1988. President of the Orchestra is Vladimir Ashkenazy. Rosemary Furniss and Vasko Vassilev share the position of Artistic Director Concertmasters.
LCO has been recorded by Virgin Records and BMG and has been broadcast by BBC Radio 3 and ITV. Its discography includes: W.A. Mozart: Symphony No. 29 and concertos, Antonio Vivaldi: The Four Seasons, String Serenades: Tchaikovsky, Edward Elgar, Dvořák, R. Vaughan Williams, Suk Minimalist: Phillip Glass, John Adams, Steve Reich, Dave Heath.