The Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra is located in the western part of Berlin. It was founded in 1882 and comprised of a total of 54 musicians. There are now over 100 members.
It has not always been housed in the same place as a bomb destroyed the original building in 1944. The current residence is located at the Philharmonic Hall in the Kulturforum area of Berlin. The orchestra has been there since 1963. Many world famous musicians and conductors have played here including Strauss and Tchaikovsky. Its concerts are internationally renowned and it has been voted one of the best orchestras in the world.
Hans Scharoun designed the current building. Its architecture is modern/contemporary. The interior lines are clean and open spaced. At the time of construction it caused a lot controversy due to its unusual design. Many people disliked it but it went on to become an international building model for concert halls and the acoustics have been praised worldwide. It was one of the first orchestra podiums to be built in a central position with seats surrounding it. In 1987 the Chamber of Music Hall was added to the complex. It has a fine collection of musical instruments.
You do not need to attend a performance in order to view the hall. Guided tours are conducted in German and English but other language tours can be arranged. Tours are only permitted at certain times and are not allowed during rehearsal or performance times. Cameras are not permitted to be used in the hall especially during these times. Tour fees apply.
The hall can be accessed via the U-Bahn, S-Bahn or by car, though there are limited parking spaces. Concert tickets should be booked well in advance especially for more popular performances.
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