News:

German radio orchestra merger looking increasingly likely

The Southwest German Radio Symphony Orchestra and Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra are set to unite in 2016

July 18, 2014

It is looking ever more probable that a merger between the Southwest German Radio Symphony Orchestra, based in Baden-Baden and Freiburg, and the Stuttgart Radio Symphony Orchestra will go ahead in 2016 as planned.

In 2012 the SWR Broadcasting Council voted to approve the measure in response to the high cost of running two separate orchestras associated with the station. However, a number of protests against the action have taken place during the last two years.

This week a proposed endowment model aimed at rescuing the SWR Radio Symphony was rejected due to a lack of funding commitment. The amount raised was well below the required sum of €11m. ‘There is a lack of commitment to provide the money necessary for the continued existence of the orchestra on a permanent basis,’ said SWR director Peter Boudgoust.

Nevertheless, protests are continuing, particularly in Baden-Baden and Frieburg, whose communities stand to lose their local radio orchestra when the newly merged ensemble takes up residence in Stuttgart.  

Photo: A 2013 recording by the Southwest German Radio Symphony led by principal conductor François-Xavier Roth

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