The Deutsche Radio Philharmonie (German Radio Philharmonic Orchestra) shapes the musical life of an entire region – most sustainably within the catchment area of the orchestra locations Saarbrücken and Kaiserslautern, but also in the border district of France as well as in Mainz, Karlsruhe and Mannheim. The Orchestra has toured Switzerland, Poland, China and Japan in recent years and is a regular guest in South Korea.
The Finn Pietari Inkinen was appointed Principal Conductor in 2017. When he began his tenure, he brought the music of Jean Sibelius and his compatriots to the fore. Pietari Inkinen is a trained violinist and in very close contact with top artists of the international violin scene. The Deutsche Radio Philharmonie has invited Pinchas Zukerman, Vadim Gluzman and the young exceptional violinist Daniel Lozakovich to participate in the 18/19 season.
Stylistic diversity is the hallmark of the programs. At the heart is the late romantic standard repertoire – with key works of Gustav Mahler, Sergei Prokofiev, Igor Stravinsky and Dmitrij Shostakovich highlighted in this current season of the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie. Modern classics like the works of Arnold Schönberg, Anton Webern and Krzysztof Penderecki are as much a part of the performance as are the compositions by George Gershwin, Leonard Bernstein or Cole Porter from an area bordering jazz. Musical creations by less known composers such as the Symphonie brève by the Franco-German romantic composer Louis Théodore Gouvy, Erwin Schulhoff’s Suite in the New Style written in Saarbrücken in 1918 or Music for Orchestra composed by Rudi Stephan, who died in 1915 during World War I are also featured in the programs. The Deutsche Radio Philharmonie opens up new worlds of sound as an interpreter of contemporary orchestral music – with works by the Swiss David Philip Hefti, the Finn Kimmo Hakola or the Austrian Johannes Maria Staud in this current season – and as the host of the “Saarbrücker Komponistenwerkstatt””. With moderated concerts and the format “DRP-PUR” (i.e. without a conductor and guest soloist) the orchestra breaks new ground in the experience of music. The educational music program “Klassik macht Schule” designed for the younger generations is an integral part of the orchestra work.
Live in the concert hall, through the cultural programs of the Saarländischer Rundfunk (SR) and the Südwestrundfunk (SWR), on SR/SWR television, on ARTE or on CD, the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie as a Radio Orchestra of the highest artistic quality makes the enormous repertoire spectrum available to the friends of classical music. The Orchestra in accessible for its audience in the digital world via live streaming and Mediathek (German media library app), via Youtube and Facebook.
The Deutsche Radio Philharmonie was created in 2007 following the merger of the Rundfunk-Sinfonieorchester Saarbrücken (SR) and the SWR Rundfunkorchester. The Orchestra was able to make its name under the principal conductors Karel Mark Chichon (2011 to 2017) and Christoph Poppen (2007 to 2011). The late Stanislaw Skrowaczewski, who passed away in 2017, was closely connected with the orchestra as the Principal Guest Conductor. In 2015, at the age of 92, he was appointed Conductor Emeritus.