The BBC Symphony Orchestra – celebrating its 90th birthday today – has announced the extension of chief conductor Sakari Oramo's contract until the end of the BBC Proms season in 2023.

The Finnish conductor has held the role since 2013, taking over from Jiří Bělohlávek. Oramo had previously joined the orchestra a handful of times as guest conductor. He referred to these early collaborations in his statement on the orchestra's birthday today, saying, 'Very often in these strange times my thoughts go back to a miraculous few days in 2011, when all of a sudden I found the most exciting artistic partnership of my life. The programme featured ‘Tintagel’ by Arnold Bax, Sibelius’s Third Symphony and vocal works by Sibelius and Kaija Saariaho with my dear Anu Komsi. What a quintessentially BBC SO-like programme that was – and yet probably one that hadn’t been dreamt of before.'

Oramo also holds the position of chief conductor with the Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra.

The BBC Symphony Orchestra is celebrating its 90th anniversary today with a concert featuring Sibelius's Scènes historiques, which was played during the orchestra's first tour to Scandinavia in 1956, as well as British works by Purcell, Judith Weir, Vaughan Williams, Britten and Finzi. This concert will be broadcast live on BBC Radio 3 under its principal guest conductor Dalia Stasevska, who performed with the orchestra at this year's Last Night of the Proms.


Freya ParrDigital Editor and Staff Writer, BBC Music Magazine

Freya Parr is BBC Music Magazine's Digital Editor and Staff Writer. She has also written for titles including the Guardian, Circus Journal, Frankie and Suitcase Magazine, and runs The Noiseletter, a fortnightly arts and culture publication. Freya's main areas of interest and research lie in 20th-century and contemporary music.