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The Royal Scottish National Orchestra (RSNO) is Scotland's national symphony orchestra. Based in Glasgow, the 89-member professional orchestra also regularly performs in Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee, and abroad. Formed in 1843 to accompany the Glasgow Choral Union (today known as the RSNO CHorus) and recognised formally in 1891 as the Scottish Orchestra, the company has performed full-time since 1950, when it took the name Scottish National Orchestra. It was awarded royal patronage in 1991. Shortly after the award it briefly used the title Royal Scottish Orchestra before reverting to its present name.

Under its first Scottish-born, and longest serving conductor, Sir Alexander Gibson, the orchestra began to develop an international profile. In line with Gibson's own specialities, the orchestra became known for its interpretations of Scandinavian composers, notably Jean Sibelius and Carl Nielsen. This was consolidated in the tenure of Neeme Järvi, who also led the orchestra through its first complete Gustav Mahler cycle. The second Scot to lead the orchestra, Bryden Thomson, maintained the Nordic link with a cycle of Nielsen symphonies.

The RSNO's base is at Henry Wood Hall in Glasgow and is also used as its recording venue; a new base is being constructed within the Royal Concert Hall, Buchanan Street. The RSNO also performs throughout Scotland, at such venues as the Glasgow Royal Concert Hall, Usher Hall (Edinburgh), Caird Hall (Dundee), Aberdeen Music Hall, Perth Concert Hall and Eden Court Inverness.

The orchestra had a long-standing recording contract with Chandos Records in the 1980s and 1990s which has recently been re-established. Today, it chiefly records for Naxos Records, most notably in a cycle of Anton Bruckner symphonies with the late Georg Tintner, cycles of Arnold Bax symphonies with David Lloyd-Jones, and several recordings of American works (including the complete orchestral works of Samuel Barber) conducted by Marin Alsop, who was the RSNO's principal guest conductor from 2000 to 2003. In May 2007, the RSNO made their first recordings with Stéphane Denève, of music of Albert Roussel, for Naxos. The first recording received the Diapason d'Or de l'année for Symphonic Music. The second disc in the series was released in 2008.

The RSNO is supported by the RSNO Chorus. The RSNO Chorus evolved from a choir formed in 1843 to sing the first full performance of Handel's Messiah in Scotland, in April 1844. The RSNO Chorus performs with the RSNO throughout the year, and for the RSNO's Season and Prom series in Glasgow, Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Dundee. In addition to its commitment to the RSNO, the Chorus performs independently and has toured worldwide. The current chorus director is Timothy Dean, since 2006.

The RSNO's music director from 2005-2012 was Stéphane Denève. In April 2007, his contract was initially extended through 2011, and in March 2010, further extended 1 year through the 2011–2012 season, after which time his tenure is scheduled to conclude. In January 2011, the RSNO announced the appointment of Peter Oundjian as its next music director, as of the 2012–2013 season, with an initial contract of 4 years. Past principal guest conductors, in addition to Alsop, have included Garry Walker (2003–2007). In October 2011, Thomas Søndergård was named the RSNO's next principal guest conductor, as of the 2012–2013 season, with an initial contract of 3 years for 3 programmes per year. The RSNO's current assistant conductor is Christian Kluxen, since September 2010.

In April 2007, the orchestra became one of Scotland's five national performing companies, supported directly by the Scottish Government (previously support came through the Scottish Arts Council). The orchestra's current chief executive is Michael (Mick) Elliott.

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Discography

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Album

Year Title Artist Rating Releases
1977 Scenes Historiques / Rakastava / Valse Lyrique Sibelius; Scottish National Orchestra, Sir Alexander Gibson 4
1981 Scottish Overtures The Scottish National Orchestra, Sir Alexander Gibson 1
1982 The Three Symphonies and Ode Igor Stravinsky; Scottish National Orchestra, Sir Alexander Gibson 1
1983 Symphonies 1 & 7 Sibelius; Scottish National Orchestra, Sir Alexander Gibson 1
1985 Slavonic Dances, op. 46 and op. 72 Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 3
1985 Stravinsky: Le Baiser de la fée / Tchaikovsky: Bluebird. Pas de deux Igor Stravinsky, Peter Tchaikovsky; The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1985 Symphonies 4 & 5 Jean Sibelius; Scottish National Orchestra, Sir Alexander Gibson 1
1985 Symphony no. 1 in D, op. 25 "Classical" / Symphony no. 4, op. 112 Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1985 Symphony no. 1 in F, op. 10 / Symphony no. 6 in B minor, op. 54 Dmitri Shostakovich; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1985 Symphony no. 2 in D minor, op. 40 / Romeo and Juliet: Suite no. 1 Sergei Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 2
1985 Symphony no. 3 in C minor, op. 44 / Symphony no. 4, op. 47 Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 2
1985 Symphony No. 6 in E-flat minor, Op. 111 / Three Waltzes, Op. 110 Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1986 Rachmaninov: The Bells (Choral Symphony) / Vocalise / Tchaikovsky: Romeo and Juliet Duo / Festival Coronation March Sergey Rachmaninov, Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky; Scottish National Orchestra, SNO Chorus, Neeme Järvi, Suzanne Murphy, Keith Lewis, David Wilson-Johnson 1
1986 Raymonda, Op. 57: Music From the Ballet Alexander Glazunov; Royal Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1986 Rimsky-Korsakov: Scheherazade / Glazunov: Stenka Razin Nickolay Rimsky-Korsakov, Alexander Glazunov; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1986 Romeo and Juliet Suite no. 2, op. 64 / Dreams, op. 6 / Pushkiniana Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 2
1986 Symphony no. 2 in C minor, op. 29 / Rêverie, op. 24 Alexander Scriabin; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1986 Symphony No. 5 in B-flat, Op. 100 / Three Waltzes, Op. 110 Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1986 Symphony no. 7 in C-sharp minor, op. 131 / Sinfonietta, op. 5/48 Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 2
1987 Also sprach Zarathustra / Don Juan / Muttertändelei / Cäcilie Richard Strauss; The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Felicity Lott 1
1987 An Alpine Symphony / 4 Songs Richard Strauss; The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Felicity Lott 1
1987 Ein Heldenleben / Four Last Songs Richard Strauss; The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Felicity Lott 1
1987 Music From Estonia, Volume 1 Heino Eller, Kaljo Raid; The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1987 Peter & The Wolf / Cinderella Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Lina Prokofiev 1
1987 Sinfonia Concertante / Romeo and Juliet Suite no. 3 Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Raphael Wallfisch 1
1987 Symphonia Domestica / Till Eulenspiegel / 2 Songs Richard Strauss; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Felicity Lott 1
1987 Symphony no. 5 / The Water Goblin Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 2
1987 Symphony no. 6 in D major, op. 60 / The Noon Witch, Symphonic Poem, op. 108 Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1987 Symphony no. 7 in D minor, op. 70 / The Golden Spinning Wheel, Symphonic Poem, op. 109 Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1987 Symphony no. 9 in E minor, op. 95 "From the New World" / My Home Overture, op. 62 Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 2
1988 Alexander Nevsky / Scythian Suite Sergey Prokofiev; Linda Finnie, SNO Chorus, Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 Don Quixote / Romanze in F / Ruhe, meine Seele! / Gesang der Apollopriesterin Richard Strauss; The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Raphael Wallfisch, Felicity Lott 1
1988 Kalinnikov: Symphony No. 1 / Glazunov: The Sea, Op. 28 / Spring, Op. 34 Kalinnikov, Glazunov; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 Nutcracker, Act II / Swan Lake (selection) Peter Ilyich Tchaikovsky; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 Symphony no. 1 "The Bells of Zlonice" / The Hero's Song, Symphonic Poem, op. 111 Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 Symphony No. 2 / Slavonic Rhapsody No. 3 Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 Symphony no. 3 in E-flat major, op. 10 / Carnival Overture, op. 92 / Symphonic Variations, op. 78 Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 Symphony No. 4 / Biblical Songs Antonín Dvořák; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Brian Rayner Cook 1
1988 Symphony no. 7, the "Leningrad" Dmitri Shostakovich; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 Symphony No. 9 in E-flat, Op. 70 / Suite from Katerina Ismailova / Festive Overture, Op. 96 / Tea for Two, Op. 16 Dmitri Shostakovich; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 Symphony no. 10 in E minor, op. 93 / Ballet Suite no. 4 Dmitri Shostakovich; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1988 The Seasons, op. 67 / Violin Concerto, op. 82 Alexander Glazunov; The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Oscar Shumsky 1
1989 Violin Concertos: No. 1 in D major, Op. 19 / No. 2 in G minor, Op. 63 Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Lydia Mordkovitch 1
1989 Ballet Suites 1, 2, 3 Dmitri Shostakovich; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1989 Der Rosenkavalier Suite / Salome's Dance / Suite from Capriccio Richard Strauss; The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi, Felicity Lott 1
1989 Music From Estonia, Volume 2 The Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 2
1989 Suites from Chout, op. 21a / Le Pas d'acier, op. 41a / The Love for Three Oranges, op. 33a Sergey Prokofiev; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1989 Symphony no. 4 in C minor, op. 43 Dmitri Shostakovich; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1
1989 Symphony no. 5 in D minor, op. 47 / Ballet Suite no. 5 from "The Bolt", op. 27a Dmitri Shostakovich; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 2
1989 Symphony no. 8 in C minor, op. 65 Dmitri Shostakovich; Scottish National Orchestra, Neeme Järvi 1

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