Past Events

Take a look at some of the events that our Friends have enjoyed in the past. You can find all our forthcoming events here.

Open Rehearsal - Nelsons: Bruckner Symphony no. 5

19 January 2017

Andris Nelsons conductor

BRUCKNER Symphony No. 5

Click here for further concert details

Open Rehearsal - Beethoven: Symphony no. 5

13 January 2017

Domingo Hindoyan conductor

Min Lee violin

WAGNER Overture, Der Fliegende Holländer

BARBER Violin Concerto

BEETHOVEN Symphony No. 5

Click here for further concert details

Open Rehearsal - Bartók & Shostakovich: From the East

24 November 2016

Juraj Valčuha conductor

Frank Peter Zimmermann violin

BARTÓK Violin Concerto No. 2


Click here for further concert information

Open Rehearsal - Neilsen Series: Paavo Järvi

10 November 2016

We strongly advise that you RSVP in advance to all Open Rehearsal by contacting the Friends team on 020 7921 3906 or via email at, as rehearsal details are subject to change at the last minute.

Please enter the auditiorium via the Level 4 Green Side doors, where a member of staff will be there to greet you. We kindly ask that you sit no further forward than row M.

An Evening of Chamber Music

29 June 2015

This is the 20th Anniversary of our residency in Bedford and the 70th of the Orchestra. To celebrate this, we invite Friends of the Philharmonia to an evening of Chamber Music with a String Quintet of Philharmonia musicians.

Wine and canapes will be served at the interval.

Friends End of Season Dinner

25 June 2015

Friends of the Philharmonia can join us for a two course pre-concert dinner at the Archduke to celebrate the end of a successful season. Members of the Orchestra will be there to thank you for your support.

Principal Friends' Sponsored Concert Reception at the Royal Festival Hall

15 March 2015

Principal Friends are invited to a private reception at the Royal Festival Hall to thank them for their support of the concert. We hope that you can join us for a wine and canape reception before the concert.

Friends' Sponsored Concert Reception at De Montfort Hall

17 February 2015

Celebrate this year's Friends' Sponsored cConcert at this pre-concert reception at De Montfort Hall. Drinks and nibbles will be served and Friends will have the opportunity to talk to members of the Philharmonia Orchestra.

2015/16 Season Launch at the Royal Festival Hall

22 January 2015

We are delighted to be able to share our 2015/16 season plans and give you an exciting preview into our 70th Anniversary, with a talk by David Whelton and a member of the Philharmonia Orchestram before the season brochures are distributed and Priority Booking opens for Friends on Monday 26 January.

The Phil' on Film at the Bedford Corn Exchange

20 January 2015

Join us for an exclusive screening of archive Philharmonia Orchestra footage. This is a wonderful opportunity to see a glimpse of the Orchestra’s history and a rare look at the past.

Full details of ticket prices and how to book will be publicised shortly. Please call the Friends team on 020 7921 3951 for more information.

Post Concert Christmas Reception at the Royal Festival Hall

14 December 2014

We warmly welcome you to our Annual Christmas Reception to thank you for your generous support throughout 2014. 

Join us for some mulled wine, minced pies and music at 5pm after this afternoon’s concert which will feature Smetana, Brahms and Tchaikovsky and will be conducted by Santtu-Matias Rouvali.

Please note that this a post-concert reception and Friends will need to purchase their concert tickets in addition. 

An Introduction to the 2014/15 Season at the Royal Festival Hall

23 October 2014

We are delighted to present to our Friends an exciting opportunity to gain an insight into the new season, as David Whelton, the Managing Director of the Philharmonia Orchestra, will introduce the 2014/15 season programme and talk through some of its highlights, such as the City of Light concert series, which explores the cultural history of Paris between 1900 and 1950.

There will be an opportunity to ask questions about the upcoming season, as well as find out more about the work that goes into planning a concert.

The Guildhall and Windsor Castle

26 September 2014

The Philharmonia Orchestra will perform its annual concert at the Windsor Festival on Friday 26 September. Domingo Hindoyan will be conducting Grieg's Holberg Suite Op.40, Hummel's Trumpet Concerto with Norwegian trumpeter Tine Thing Helseth and ending with Beethoven's Symphony No.3, Eroica in the stunning Waterloo Chamber at Windsor Castle.

There will be a wine and canapés reception with Philharmonia musicians from 6-7pm at The Guildhall, which is just a short walk away from the Castle itself. Following the reception, there will be chaperones to guide you to the entrance of Waterloo Chamber in time for the concert at 7.30pm.

Concert and Private View of 'Highlanders: Billeted in Bedford

24 September 2014

Join us and the Friends of The Higgins Bedford at 19.15pm for an evening in remembrance of 1914 for an evening of art and music. There will be a drinks and canapé reception and an exclusive viewing of the forthcoming exhibition “Highlanders: Billeted in Bedford.” The exhibition examines the little-known story of the 22,000 soldiers of the Highland Division who were billeted in Bedford as they trained and prepared to fight on the Western Front in France.

The Private View will be followed by a special private performance at 20.30pm from a String Trio of members of the Philharmonia Orchestra, playing music that compliments the theme of 1914.

Bedford Friends' Trip to Royal Festival Hall

29 June 2014

Bedford Friends of the Philharmonia are warmly invited on a trip to visit another of the Orchestra's residencies, Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall.

This trip includes a pre-concert two-course meal with wine at The Archduke Restaurant in Waterloo, which will be followed by the Orchestra's performance of Mahler's Symphony No. 8, led by Esa-Pekka Salonen, to close the 2013/14 concert season in London.

Open Rehearsal - Salonen/Latry/Batiashvili

26 June 2014

Principal Conductor and Artistic Advisor Esa-Pekka Salonen leads the Philharmonia in a rehearsal of Saariaho's Maan varjot (Earth's Shadows) featuring organist Olivier Latry, as well as Sibelius' Violin Concerto (with soloist Lisa Batiashvili) and also Sibelius' Symphony No. 2.

Open Rehearsal - Järvi/Gerstein

12 June 2014

Paavo Järvi conducts the Philharmonia in a rehearsal of Glinka's Overture from Ruslan and Ludmilla, Rachmaninov's Piano Concerto No. 3 (featuring soloist Kirill Gerstein) and Shostakovich's Symphony No. 5.

Please note that this rehearsal may be shortened.

London Friends' Dinner 2014

12 June 2014

On Thursday 12 June, Friends of the Philharmonia are invited to join players for a pre-concert meal at The Archduke restaurant in Waterloo.

The dinner will be followed by the evening performance of Shostakovich's Symphony No. 5 at Southbank Centre's Royal Festival Hall, led by Estonian conductor Paavo Järvi.

Leicester Friends Lunch

11 June 2014

We will once again be inviting our Friends to an end of season two-course lunch at Le Bistrot Pierre in Leicester.

Open Rehearsal - Dohnányi/Westbroek

5 June 2014

Christoph von Dohnányi is joined by soprano Eva-Maria Westbroek in a rehearsal of Strauss' Four Last Songs and Bruckner's Symphony No. 9.

Players in the Friends Bar

5 June 2014

Join fellow Friends of the Philharmonia pre-concert from 6.45pm in the Friends Bar at the Royal Festival Hall where members of the Orchestra will be present to meet you.

Talk and Chamber Concert at the Tower of London

28 May 2014

Having recently formed an exciting new relationship with Historic Royal Palaces, we are pleased to invite Friends to a Talk and Chamber Concert at the Tower of London as a joint event with HRP members.
The evening will begin with a drinks reception, prior to a talk from a resident Yeoman Warder about the history of the Tower of London through the ages. There will then be a recital of British woodwind repertoire performed by Philharmonia musicians, followed by a canapé reception when guests will have the opportunity to meet the musicians, as well as the Yeomen Warder on duty.

Open Rehearsal - Sokhiev/Angelich

22 May 2014

Tugan Sokhiev conducts the Philharmonia Orchestra in a rehearsal of Fauré's Suite from Pelléas et Mélisande and Ravel's Piano Concerto in G (featuring soloist Nicholas Angelich), as well as Debussy's La mer and Stravinsky's Suite from The Firebird (1919).

Open Rehearsal - Hrůša/Mørk

15 May 2014

Jakub Hrůša is joined by cellist Truls Mørk in a rehearsal of Dvořák's Cello Concerto as well as Suk's Asrael Symphony.

Open Rehearsal - Afkham/Khachatryan

8 May 2014

David Afkham conducted the Philharmonia Orchestra in a rehearsal of Lindberg's Chorale, Berg's Violin Concerto (with soloist Sergey Khachatryan), and Schubert's Symphony No. 9, The Great.

Open Rehearsal - Ashkenazy/Yoo

2 May 2014

Vladimir Ashkenazy was joined by violinist Esther Yoo in a rehearsal of Sibelius' Finlandia and Violin Concerto, as well as Tchaikovsky's Symphony No. 5.

Open Rehearsal - Hrůša/Vondráček et al

13 April 2014

Jakub Hrůša conducted the Philharmonia in a rehearsal of Suk's Scherzo Fantastique and Dvořák's Piano Concerto (featuring soloist Lukáš Vondráček), as well as Janáček's Glagolitic Mass featuring Bristol Choral Society and soloists Gun-Brit Barkmin, Monica Groop, Peter Berger, Mischa Schelomianski and Thomas Trotter.

Open Rehearsal - Hrůša/Steinbacher

10 April 2014

Jakub Hrůša conducted the Orchestra in a rehearsal of Janáček's Overture, Jealousy and his Sinfonietta, as well as Dvořák's Violin Concerto in A minor (featuring soloist Arabella Steinbacher) and Suk's Praga.

Players in the Friends Bar

10 April 2014

Friends of the Philharmonia were joined by members of the Orchestra, pre-concert in the Friends bar at the Royal Festival Hall.

Open Rehearsal - Gardner/Donose

3 April 2014

Edward Gardner was joined by mezzo-soprano Ruxandra Donose in a rehearsal of Wagner's Overture from Rienzi, Berlioz's La Mort de Cléopâtre and Elgar's Symphony No. 1.


Leicester Friends Film Screening

2 April 2014

Following our popular film event last season, we were pleased to invite Leicester Friends to our second Philharmonia film screening, which took place in the Garden Suite at De Montfort Hall and featured an episode of The Phil, a documentary about the Orchestra which was filmed in 1997.

Following the screening, refreshments were provided for guests prior to our evening concert, which featured a programme of Wagner, Berlioz and Elgar repertoire led by Edward Gardner and also featuring mezzo-soprano Ruxandra Donose.

Open Rehearsal - Maazel

20 March 2014

Maestro Maazel conducted the Philharmonia Orchestra in a rehearsal of Strauss' orchestral blockbusters Also sprach Zarathustra and Ein Alpensinfonie.


Open Rehearsal - Cleobury / Llewellyn / Ruutel / Johnson / Neven / Choir of King's College, Cambridge

12 March 2014

A rehearsal of Handel's Zadok The Priest, Mozart's Symphony No. 40 and Beethoven's Mass in C, which featured the voices of Elizabeth Llewellyn, Kai Ruutel, Ben Johnson, Henk Neven and the Choir of King's College, Cambridge, conducted by Steven Cleobury.

Principal Friends Sponsored Concert Reception

9 March 2014

Principal Friends were warmly welcomed to enjoy a pre-concert cream tea reception in thanks for their ongoing support of the Philharmonia Orchestra.