Orkiestra Filharmonii Bałtyckiej

The Baltic Philharmonic Symphony Orchestra in Gdańsk

Formed in 1974, the Gdańsk Symphony Orchestra changed its name the next year to The Symphony Orchestra of Polish Philharmonic Hall. The founder, and for many years the artistic director, was Zygmunt Rychert. The work of the young conductor and the orchestra quickly won recognition among critics and music lovers not only in Poland but also abroad. Artistic direction has been under the auspices of: Zygmunt Rychert (1976-1981; 1998-2003), Bogusław Madey (1981-1983), Jerzy Salwarowski (1983-1984 an artistic consultant), Wojciech Czepiel (1984-1986), Wojciech Rajski (1987-1989), Paweł Przytocki (1989-1991), Janusz Przybylski (1992-1993), Roman Perucki (1993-1998), Michał Nesterowicz (January 2004-).

Many superb conductors have been invited to work with the Baltic Philharmonic Hall Orchestra - mention has to be made of work conducted by: Witold Rowicki, Jerzy Maksymiuk, Kazimierz Kord, Krzysztof Missona, Karol Teutsch, Jerzy Katlewicz, Andrzej Markowski, Jerzy Salwarowski, Wojciech Michniewski, Tadeusz Wojciechowski, Tadeusz Strugała, Marek Pijarowski, José Mario Florencio, Mirosław Błaszczyk, Tomasz Bugaj, Kai Bumann, Franco Ferrara, Enoch von zu Gutenberg, Carlo Zecchi and Felix Carrasco.

The Baltic Philharmonic Hall boasts a host of guest performers, including among the others: Ewa Pobłocka, Konstanty Andrzej Kulka, Krystian Zimerman, Krzysztof Jakowicz, Piotr Paleczny, Janusz Olejniczak, Leszek Możdżer, Piotr Pławner, Kaia Danczowska, Andrzej Bauer, Krzysztof Jabłoński, Bożena Harasimowicz, Leonard Andrzej Mróz, Jadwiga Rappé, Elżbieta Towarnicka, Vadim Brodski, Valery Oistrach, Edward Auer, Barbara Hendricks, Nigel Kennedy, Ann Murray, Lucia Aliberti and Helen Bickers.

The musicians from the Baltic Philharmonic Orchestra have been guests at many festivals in Poland and in Europe, such as Poznan Spring, Vratislavia Cantans, Warsaw Autumn, Oratorio Festival in Denmark, Scandinavian festival "Nordteile", or famous "Aspekte" in Salzburg. They have been invited to tour in Germany, France, Switzerland and Italy, and to Concert Halls in Vienna, Salzburg, Paris, Berlin, Bremen, Frankfurt and St Petersburgh. During the 11th Music Biennale in Berlin (1987) the Baltic Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Wojciech Michniewski won the critics prize for the best Orchestra for the performance of Krzysztof Penderecki's 1st Symphony. In 1989 during a European tour, the orchestra gave aco ncert with a choir "Cecilien Verein" from Fankfurt in Munich Philharmonic Hall, Alte Oper in Frankfurt and Concertgebouw in Amsterdam. In 1991 thet performed Verdi's Requiem inTours, Marseille, in Switzerland - Zurich, Basel, Lausanne, Bern and concerts in Italy crowned by a performance for His Holiness Pope John Paul II. In 1988 the orchestra represented Poland at the world exhibition Expo in Lisbon. For a couple of years the orchestra has given concerts In many German cities, including Schleswig, Bayreuth, Bremen and Berlin.

The Polish Philharmonic Hall and its musicians often initiate and create many cultural events in Gdańsk and along the coast. On the 1000th anniversary of the City of Gdańsk in 1997, in cooperation with other Gdańsk artists, they prepared music for the mass in Rome celebrated by John Paul II, which opened the celebration of the city's millennium. During a cycle of concerts organized with the Polish-German Foundation "Millennium Musical Meetings" the president of Germany Roman Herzog and president of Poland Aleksander Kwaśniewski were present .

During the celebration of 25 years of Solidarity and the Events of August `80 in Gdańsk Polish Philharmonic Hall took an active part in the biggest artistic events. The musicians conducted by Michal Nesterowicz took part in two spectacular events - Jean Michael Jarre's concert "Space of Freedom" (26.08.2005) and the world's first performance of J. A. P. Kaczmarek´s "Cantata of Freedom" at the Solidarity Square next to the Monument of the killed shipyard workers.