Residentie Orkest den Haag
from The Hague, The Netherlands
formed November 1, 1904 (age 117)
The Residentie Orkest den Haag, known in English as the Hague Philharmonic, is one of the most prominent orchestras in the musically rich Netherlands. Since the 1970s the orchestra has enjoyed the leadership of an unusually distinguished and varied roster of conductors. The Residentie Orkest (in Dutch Het Residentie Orkest, or the Residence Orchestra) took its name from the fact that the city of Den Haag, or The Hague, is the residence, or seat, of the Dutch government, although Amsterdam is the country's capital. The orchestra was formed in 1903 and grew rapidly in renown; by 1911 Richard Strauss was conducting the group during a festival devoted to his music. Other noted composers who conducted the Residentie Orkest were Ravel, Hindemith, Reger, and Stravinsky. Its longtime conductor in the postwar years was Willem van Otterloo. The orchestra maintained its schedule through World War II, but its life was disrupted when its hall, the Gebouw voor Kunsten en Wetenschappe, burned to the ground. It was finally replaced in 1987 by the Philipszaal, named for major donor Anton Philips of the Philips record label. Since the 1970s the orchestra has opened itself to foreign conductors, including Jean Martinon (1974-1976), Evgeny Svetlanov (1993-2000), Neeme Järvi (2005-2012), and Nicholas Collon (2018-); another important conductor was Jaap van Zweden (2000-2005), who went on to lead the Dallas Symphony and New York Philharmonic orchestras in the U.S. In the 2010s the orchestra has struggled with budget cuts from the city of The Hague but has managed to release notable recordings, including several of music by Philip Glass on that composer's Orange Mountain Music label. In 2017 they released an album featuring Glass' Life: A Journey Through Time. In addition to a concert season in The Hague, the orchestra has toured abroad; it made the first of several appearances at the BBC Proms in London in 2008. ~ James Manheim, Rovi
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