“An excellent sense of taste and proportion”, “entrancing, breathtaking beauty of the orchestra sound”, “truly world-class professionals” – this is how the press writes about the Novaya Opera Orchestra.
The high standards of the orchestra’s performance were set by the Novaya Opera’s founder, Evgeny Kolobov. After his death, the position of chief conductor was held by prominent musicians Felix Korobov (2004-2006) and Eri Klas (2006-2011),Jan Latham-Koenig (2011-2019; since 2019, he has been chief guest conductor). In 2021, maestro Valentin Uryupin took over the position of chief conductor – music director of Novaya Opera.
Today the Novaya Opera’s conductors are Evgeny Samoilov, Nikolay Sokolov, Vasily Valitov, Dmitry Volosnikov, Valery Kritskov and Andrey Lebedev.
In addition to playing operas, the orchestra participates in recitals of Novaya Opera soloists and performs symphony programmes. There are reliable crowd-pleasers like Symphony Jazz Kings, Opera&Jazz, and Richard Wagner, which always end with a standing ovation. The Musical Confessions concert programme, where orchestra members played solos onstage, became a real revelation to the audience and the musicians themselves. The orchestra’s concert repertoire comprises Shostakovich’s Symphonies 6, 7 and 13, Mahler’s Symphonies 1, 2 and 4, and Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen, Strauss’ orchestral suite Le bourgeois gentilhomme, Liszt’s Totentanz, Janáček's rhapsody Taras Bulba, Henk de Vlieger’s symphonic fantasies Meistersinger — an orchestral tribute and Tristan und Isolde, an orchestral passion, Jenkins’ Adiemus: Songs of Sanctuary, Gershwin’s Rhapsody in Blue for piano and orchestra, An American in Paris, Porgy and Bess: A Symphonic Picture (arranged by Robert Russell Bennett),Weill’s Kleine Dreigroschenmusik for winds, Milhaud’s Le bœuf sur le toit, Walton’s Incidental music to the Laurence Olivier films Hamlet (1948) and Henry V (1944),to mention but a few.
In the course of the years, the orchestra has collaborated with prominent conductors of different generations: Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Vladimir Fedoseyev, Yuri Temirkanov, Constantine Orbelian, Alexandru Samoilă, Gintaras Rinkevičius, Antonello Allemandi, Antonino Fogliani, Fabio Mastrangelo, Laurent Campellone, Michael Guettler and many others. It has worked with world opera stars Jose Cura, Mario Frangoulis, Dmitry Hvorostovsky, Ildar Abdrazakov, Matti Salminen, Elena Obraztsova, Sonya Yoncheva, Lyubov Petrova, Olga Borodina, Irina Lungu, Olga Peretyatko, Pretty Yende, pianists Eliso Virsaladze, Nikolay Petrov, Nikolay Khozyainov, cellist Natalya Gutman, to name but a few.
The orchestra actively collaborates with the Moscow Classical Ballet and the Moscow Ballet Theatre.
Audiences of almost all the continents have applauded the NO orchestra. An important line of the orchestra’s activity has for years been concerts and operas in various concert halls in Moscow and across Russia.
Since 2013, the orchestra members have enthusiastically participated in chamber concerts taking place in the Mirror Foyer. The concerts Flute Jumble, Verdi’s Songs, My Music is My Portrait. Francis Poulenc and some others have won great public and critical acclaim.