Glasgow Orchestral Society, founded in 1870, is a symphony orchestra with about 70 members. Our repertoire covers a wide range of music, from the classical era to the present day, including new works (recently by John Maxwell Geddes and Tom David Wilson) and choral works with local choirs.
We are a non-auditioning orchestra and we enjoy making music to the highest standards and having as much fun as possible in the process!
We are very fortunate to have a number of different conductors for our concerts, each bringing their own personality and distinctive style to our rehearsals and performances.
We give four concerts a year and rehearse weekly on Monday evenings from 7.15pm to 9.45pm, from September to May, in Maryhill Burgh Halls, 45 Gairbraid Avenue, G20 8YE
Glasgow Orchestral Society will celebrate its 150th anniversary in 2020-21.
The Glasgow Amateur Orchestral Society was founded at a meeting at 37 Sauchiehall Street, “for the study and practice of orchestral music” and “practisings” were held in The Halls at 285 Bath Street.
The first concert took place in the Queen’s Rooms, conducted by HD Mehul, nephew of the French composer Etienne Mehul (1763-1817)
The orchestra was foundering and amalgamated with another struggling group, the Glasgow Southern Orchestral Society.
Women musicians were admitted for the first time as full playing (and paying) members.
The orchestra performed two concerts as part of the official programme of events.
The orchestra continued to rehearse and perform but abandoned its activities in 1916 and did not reconvene until 1919
There were no celebrations planned for the Golden Jubilee because of the impact of the war but a significant celebration took place in 1930, including a civic reception with the Lord Provost present.
The Society was renamed Glasgow Orchestral Society, dropping the term “amateur “ from its title.
The blaze in the orchestra’s permanent home destroyed the Society’s extensive music library, most of its document archive and four double basses, one cello, one viola, a trombone, and all percussion apart from the timps.
The orchestra celebrated its centenary.
The tour took the orchestra to Umbria in Italy, with concerts in Chiusi, Gubbio, and Perugia
Celebrated in all four concerts with women playing in the ranks, as soloists, and as conductor.
Concerts in Marianske Lazne, Pilsen and Prague
Sunday 20th October 2019 19:30 Sherbrooke Mosspark Church, Pollokshields, Glasgow
Dvorak, Symphonic Variation plus more (conducted by Leon Reimer)
Sunday 15th December 2019 18:30 Sherbrooke Mosspark Church, Pollokshields, Glasgow
Programme TBC (conducted by Ross Gunning)
Saturday 14th March 2020 19:30 New Auditorium, Glasgow Royal Concert Halls
Schumamm, Konzerstuck for Four Horns plus more (conducted by Chris Swaffer)
CANCELLED Sunday 17th May 2020 19:30 Sherbrooke Mosspark Church, Pollokshields, Glasgow
Programme TBC (conducted by Robert Baxter)
Rehearsals take place on Monday evenings from 7:15pm to 9:45pm in Maryhill Burgh Halls (45 Gairbraid Avenue G20 8YE).
Download the Rehearsal Schedule here
Rehearsals for 2019/20 start back on Monday 26th August 715pm Maryhill Burgh Halls, G20 8YE
Download the Members’ Handbook here
We do not formally audition, but you should be of at least Associated Board Grade 7 standard or higher, with relevant orchestral playing experience. And you should have enough free time and be prepared to practise your parts at home between rehearsals.
New members will be invited to attend rehearsals and perform in two concerts and the committee will then decide, in consultation with the relevant section leader, to invite you to join the orchestra for the longer term.
You will be asked to pay 50% of the annual subscription for the first concert, the balance of the year's subscription to be paid on mutually satisfactory completion of the first term.
Non-playing friends are also invited to get involved in our activities.