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January 2021
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Orquesta Filarmónica de Gran Canaria

After a long period of uninterrupted symphonic activity dating back to 1845, the present Gran Canaria Philharmonic Orchestra (OFGC) arises as such under the public foundation of the same name created by the Cabildo de Gran Canaria in 1980. Since then it has been developing a continuous and stable musical activity, with a notable increase in its symphonic and lyrical performances.

Among the most prominent figures who have conducted the orchestra are Rudolf Barshai, Frans Brüggen, Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos, Bernhard Klee, Leopold Hager, Christopher Hogwood, Thomas Hengelbrock, Raymond Leppard, Jesús López Cobos, Iván Martín, John Nelson, Trevor Pinnock, Mstislav Rostropovich, Pinchas Steinberg, Ralf Weikert, Antoni Wit, as well as Adrian Leaper, who was its Chief Conductor between 1994 and 2002, and Pedro Halffter, Artistic Director and Chief Conductor between 2004 and 2016.

Many have also been the soloists who have performed with the OFGC, from the great voices of the lyrics: Montserrat Caballé, José Carreras, Plácido Domingo, Elina Garanca, Matthias Goerne, Alfredo Kraus, Petra Lang, Felicity Lott, Anne Sofie von Otter, René Pape, even the most renowned instrumentalists: Joaquín Achúcarro, Steven Isserlis, Janine Jansen, Isabelle van Keulen, Katia and Marielle Labèque, Alicia de Larrocha, Nikolai Lugansky, Mischa Maisky, Sabine Meyer, Daniel Müller-Schott, Eldar Nebolsin, Cécile Ousset , Maria João Pires, Mstislav Rostropovich, Fazil Say and Frank Peter Zimmermann, among others.

The OFGC has participated in the most important Spanish symphonic cycles and has toured Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Japan and China. The massive concerts offered at the Gran Canaria Arena, at the Gran Canaria Stadium together with Sting and Raphael, with canarian artists such as José Vélez or Luis Morera, and at the Container Terminal of the Muelle de la Luz within the the Temudas Fest ( Theater, Dance and Music Festival of Las Palmas de G.C.), have had great significance.

The name of the Gran Canaria Philharmonic Orchestra has resonated internationally once again  as it is the only Spanish orchestra participating in the 24-hour global virtual concert offered to an audience of 200 million people entitled "One world one family" together with the most important orchestras in the world. This concert included the successful video of the OFGC with Mahler's Symphony No. 2 "Resurrection" performed in confinement due to the Covid-19 crisis with the mezzo-soprano Elina Garanca under the baton of Karl Mark Chichon.

The Philharmonic Orchestra of Gran Canaria also carries out an intense effort to spread music in the different municipalities of Gran Canaria, which has recently been reinforced with the OFGC21 program, in addition to numerous actions and projects of a social nature.

Its discography includes records for Deutsche Grammophon, Warner Music, Arte Nova, ASV and the collection "La mota de dust" at AgrupArte.

The OFGC is characterized by its exemplary programming of educational concerts aimed at schoolchildren and families. It goes through a pedagogical service whose school concert campaigns and activities support teachers moving a large part of the island's educational centers. The OFGC has been incorporated into the Network of Educational and Social concerts Organizers (ROCE).

The orchestra was distinguished with the “Can de Plata” from Gran Canaria Government (Cabildo de Gran Canaria) on the 92. Anniversary of the Corporation and with the Canarian Arts and Science Prize in the World from the newspaper El Mundo and the Cabildo de Gran Canaria.

Karel Mark Chichon is Artistic Director and Head of the Gran Canaria Philharmonic Orchestra since May 2017.

Günther Herbig is Honorary Director of the OFGC.

The OFGC is a member of the Spanish Association of Symphony Orchestras (AEOS).

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