About the Orchestra

The BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra was formed in December 1935 and is a key contributor to the BBC’s broadcasting and cultural role.

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Based at:
City Halls, Glasgow
Chief Conductor:
Donald Runnicles

The BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra was formed in December 1935 and is a key contributor to the BBC’s broadcasting and cultural role. Now in its 80th year, it performs to large and enthusiastic audiences in venues throughout Scotland, and carries out a busy schedule of broadcasts and concerts for BBC Radio 3, BBC Radio Scotland, BBC television, and online. A past recipient of the Royal Philharmonic Society Award for best orchestra, the BBC SSO’s commercial recordings have received a number of prizes, including four Gramophone Awards.

Based at City Halls in Glasgow since 2006, the BBC SSO is Scotland’s leading champion of new music, and has established strong links with local communities through its thriving learning and outreach programme. It is also a major partner in Big Noise, Scotland’s innovative project for social change through music, and it maintains a close association with the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland, working over a variety of disciplines with conductors, composers, soloists and orchestral players.

The BBC SSO appears annually at the BBC Proms and the Edinburgh International Festival, as well as at other major festivals throughout the world. Recent highlights include Tectonics Glasgow - a festival of new music bringing together composers and musicians from diverse musical worlds and backgrounds - a tour of The Netherlands and Belgium, both with Ilan Volkov, and a concert performance of Wagner’s opera Tannhäuser at last year’s BBC Proms with Chief Conductor Donald Runnicles. The 2013/14 season features music from the USA, including John Adams’s jazz-inspired symphony, City Noir, James MacMillan conducting his own compositions in Glasgow, major works by Britten and Mahler, including the Fifth and Ninth Symphonies conducted by Donald Runnicles. Finally, to end the season, Andrew Manze will conclude one of the most thrilling projects the orchestra has undertaken in recent years, the complete cycle of Symphonies by Vaughan Williams, climaxing with a performance of A Sea Symphony.

For further information, please visit: bbc.co.uk/bbcsso

Full list of Players

Get in touch

  • Tel: 0141 552 0909
  • Fax: 0141 552 6078
  • Email: mailto:bbcsso@bbc.co.uk
  • Address: City Halls, Candleriggs, Glasgow, G1 1NQ



One of the UK's leading interpreters of new music, the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra has close working relationships with many of today's leading composers.

The BBC SSO's first Artist-in-Association is the New York-based composer and conductor Matthias Pintscher.

Read his full biography

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