The Bavarian Radio Chorus

As the first of the three musical ensembles of the Bayerischer Rundfunk (Bavarian Radio), the chorus was founded as early as 1946, just one year after the end of the war. In 1949, the Symphony Orchestra followed and the Münchner Rundfunkorchester was established in 1952. From the start, the chorus collaborated with both orchestras intensively and on a regular basis.

Chefdirigent Eugen Jochum und Chordirektor Josef Kugler (Bild: BR/Rudolf Betz)

1946–1960: Build-up years and the Jochum era

Founding of the chorus on May 1, 1946 | 1949: Founding of the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, shared Chief Conductor: Eugen Jochum | Opening of Herkulessaal Munich | Orff | Strawinsky | musica viva | Sunday concerts with the Münchner Rundfunkorchester – chorus master: Robert Seiler, Joseph Kugler, Kurt Prestel

Der BR-Chor singt anlässlich des 50-jährigen Priesterjubilaeums von Papst Paul VI. im Petersdom Beethovens Neunte Symphonie. Dirigent: Wolfgang Sawallisch (23.5.1970; Bild: BR-Archiv)

1961–1982: Kubelík era

Chief Conductor of the chorus and symphonic orchestra: Rafael Kubelík | Stereophonic sound | Darius Milhaud | Igor Markevitch | Ernest Ansermet | Hans Werner Henze | Hermann Scherchen | Deutscher Schallplattenpreis | Concert for the Pope in the St. Peter’s Basilica | Luciano Berio | Bayern 4 Klassik | Chorus Directors: Kurt Prestel, Wolfgang Schubert, Heinz Mende / Josef Schmidhuber, Gordon Kember

1983–1992: Sir Colin Davis – Very British

Chief Conductor of the chorus and symphonic orchestra: Sir Colin Davis | Chorus Directors: Gordon Kember, Hans-Peter Rauscher, Michael Gläser | Leonard Bernstein | Eric Ericson | Fall of the Berlin wall: „Freiheit, schöner Götterfunken“

Lorin Maazel (BR/Foto Sessner)

1993–2002: Lorin Maazel – Glossy Sound

Chief Conductor of the chorus and symphonic orchestra: Lorin Maazel | Artistic Director: Michael Gläser | Digital radio | Chorus subscription | Paradisi gloria | Iannis Xenakis | US debut | Bobby McFerrin

2003–2016: Mariss Jansons – Peter Dijkstra 

Chief Conductor of the chorus and symphonic orchestra: Mariss Jansons | Artistic Director: Michael Gläser, Peter Dijkstra, since 2016 Howard Arman | Riccardo Muti | Nikolaus Harnoncourt | Ton Koopman | Grammy | Claudio Abbado | Michael Gielen | Adriana Hölszky | Birthday concert for Pope Benedict XVI. in Rome | ECHO Klassik | In-house BR record label | Vineta | Krzysztof Penderecki | Lucerne Festival | Osterfestspiele Salzburg | Concertgebouw Bernard Haitink

Elbphilharmonie Hamburg, Eröffnungskonzerte mit dem BR-Chor (Foto: Alexander Heinzel)

Since 2016: Howard Arman

New Artistic Director Howard Arman | Opening concert Elbphilharmonie Hamburg | Lucerne Festival | Osterfestspiele Salzburg | Christmas Classics | Riccardo Muti | Franz Welser-Möst | Bernard Haitink | Herbert Blomstedt

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