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SWR Sinfonieorchester Baden-Baden und Freiburg

The SWR Symphony Orchestra of Baden-Baden and Freiburg is constantly creating space for new movements, guests and musical works: in 2008/09, it was two hundred young people from Freiburg, Offenburg, Lörrach and Karlsruhe who became partners of the orchestra in the innovative, award-winning project “Der Schrei”. Pierre Boulez has conducted the orchestra in Donaueschingen and in Vienna, Alfred Brendel chose the SWR Symphony Orchestra of Baden-Baden and Freiburg for his December 2008 pianistic farewell tour, and the Berliner Philharmonie was the place where the orchestra mounted the celebrated world première of Marc André’s orchestral triptych "...auf...": this was a continuation of the orchestra’s intensive collaboration with the composer on "...auf... III" at the Donaueschingen Festival in 2007. Since its re-establishment in 1950, the Donaueschingen Festival and the SWR Symphony Orchestra of Baden-Baden and Freiburg have been inseparably linked. The orchestra has premièred around 400 compositions there, with music history being written in the process: the list of works includes music by Hans Werner Henze, Bernd Alois Zimmermann, György Ligeti and Krzysztof Penderecki, as well as Karlheinz Stockhausen, Luigi Nono, Olivier Messiaen, Luciano Berio, Helmut Lachenmann and Wolfgang Rihm. To this day, the SWR Symphony Orchestra is an essential partner – in Donaueschingen and beyond – to the composers of our time. But while the orchestra stands “at the centre of European culture,” as Sylvain Cambreling has put it, it does so with regard to more than just contemporary music. Since its establishment in 1946, the SWR Symphony Orchestra has been a magnet for international conductors and soloists, and it has acted as a musical ambassador in Germany and abroad, between Salzburg and Lucerne, Hamburg and Madrid, Berlin and New York. The motors behind these diverse activities have always been the orchestra’s prominent head conductors, who have included Hans Rosbaud, Ernest Bour and Michael Gielen. Since 1999, Sylvain Cambreling has led the orchestra – an orchestra which, over six decades of extraordinary achievement, has developed a rare degree of both musical and conceptual flexibility and assuredness.