7 Songs, 1 Hour, 3 Minutes


About Euskadiko Orkestra Sinfonikoa

The Euskadiko Orkestra Sinfonikoa, headquartered in San Sebastián, Spain (known in Basque as Guipúzcoa), names itself the Basque National Orchestra in English. The group plays concerts around Basque country and the rest of Spain and has focused on Basque composers in concert and on recordings without restricting itself to them. The Euskadiko Orkestra Sinfonikoa was founded in 1982 and has been developed and promoted by the Department of Culture of the Basque government, which notes that Basque culture is "a society where music is a shared asset, [a] rich heritage for which the orchestra is the depository." The group is a member of the Spanish Association of Symphonic Orchestras.

The orchestra has 7,000 season subscribers and plays to audiences numbering about 150,000 annually. It plays concert cycles each year in San Sebastián, Bilbao, Vitoria, and Pamplona, while also sponsoring a related chamber music series and participating in operatic productions. The Euskadiko Orkestra Sinfonikoa was shaped artistically by conductor and consultant Enrique Jordà. The group has begun to attract guests from beyond Basque country and beyond Spain, and since 2014 its director has been Germany's Jun Märkl, and Russia's Andrey Boreyko has been principal guest conductor.

The growth in the orchestra's national and international reputation has been stimulated by its association with the Claves label, not Basque nor even Spanish but Swiss. The orchestra's recordings have delved into Basque music, much of it unknown to the wider world. An early release was devoted to the pioneering Basque nationalist José María Usandizaga (1887-1915), and another to Andrés Isasi, a student of Engelbert Humperdinck. The group has offered both general introductory releases (Sounds of the Basque Country, 2003) and fairly specialized albums. An ongoing Basque Music Collection has reached 15 volumes. The Euskadiko Orkestra Sinfonikoa released an album of music by Sofia Gubaidulina in 2011 on the Etcetera label and continued to branch out into non-Basque music with a 2018 album of music by Saint-Saëns on Naxos. ~ James Manheim