The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra



Biography

The year 1971 marked the long-awaited opening of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts in Washington, D.C. On opening night, Leonard Bernstein's Mass made its world premiere in the Opera House. Among the musicians performing in the orchestra was a group of Washington, D.C. artists who would become the nucleus for the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra.

In 1993, the world-renowned German opera conductor, Heinz Fricke, was appointed to the joint position of Music Director of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra and the Washington National Opera. Thanks to his leadership and dedication, the Orchestra reached a new level of excellence, and consistently receives favorable notice from the press.   Maestro Fricke was named Music Director Emeritus upon his retirement in 2010.

The Orchestra’s current Music Director, Philippe Auguin, was appointed at the beginning of the 2010-11 season.  As one of the most sought-after conductors of his generation in both the operatic and symphonic fields, he regularly collaborates with leading opera houses and orchestras throughout the world.  The Orchestra continues its successes and artistic excellence under Maestro Auguin’s expert direction.

Today, the 62 musicians hail from South Korea, China, Spain, Russia, and all regions of North America. They are highly trained musicians who have attended the conservatories of Juilliard, the Eastman School of Music, Oberlin, the Curtis Institute, and others throughout the U.S. and Europe. Sixty-five percent of the members hold advanced degrees in their field. Positions are filled through a highly competitive process of national auditions, and winning such an audition is a signal event in any musician's musical career.

Watch Past Performances

Video 6/5/2015: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play Onslow’s String Quartet in C minor and Mozart’s Oboe Quartet in F major.

Video 4/4/2015: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

In Trombonists of the Kennedy Center, eight highly skilled players from the KCOHO and NSO perform arrangements of works by Handel, Brahms, and Bourgeois.

Video 1/11/2015: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO—Jennifer Kim (violin), Uri Wassertzug (viola), Ignacio Alcover (cello), and Kathryn Brake (piano)—perform a master chamber work by Brahms.

Video 12/16/2014: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

KCOHO members Ko Sugiyama (violin), Jennifer Kim (violin), Philippe Chao (viola), Allyson Goodman (viola), Kristen Wojcik (cello), and Ignacio Alcover (cello) perform chamber works by Brahms and a sextet by Strauss.

Video 10/14/2014: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play Schoenfield’s Café Music and Beethoven’s Trio in B-flat.

Video 6/15/2014: The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play works by Kodály and Hermann.

Video 5/30/2014: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play works by Fauré, Rota, and Khachaturian.

Video 1/26/2014: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play Mozart’s Divertimento for Winds, Beethoven’s March, and Beethoven’s Sextet, Op. 71.

Video 12/17/2013: The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play Krein’s Esquisses Hebraiques and Mozart’s Clarinet Quintet.

Video 10/27/2013: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

KCOHO musicians play Kuhlau’s Flute Quintet in A major and Beach’s Theme and Variations for Flute and String Quartet.

Video 6/15/2013: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play Colson’s Quiet Places and Brahms’s Quintet in B minor.

Video 3/28/2013: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO perform Grieg’s Sonata No. 3 in C minor and Brahms’ Piano Quartet in G minor.

Video 2/6/2013: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play selections from Stravinsky’s The Firebird, Borodin’s Prince Igor, and Fauré’s Piano Quartet No. 2.

Video 11/24/2012: The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO perform selections from Rossini’s The Barber of Seville, Weissenborn’s Six Trios for Three Bassoons, and Brahms’s Horn Trio.

Video 10/27/2012: The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO perform Schubert’s Octet in F major.

Video 7/10/2012: The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play works by Beethoven and Schumann.

Video 6/12/2012: The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO perform Alfred Schnittke’s String Trio and Robert Kahn’s Sonata for Cello and Piano in D minor, Op. 56.

Video 3/28/2012: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play a program of classical works.

Video 3/1/2012: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Washington National Opera presents a program featuring salon music by Janácek, Mozart, and Ligeti played by members of the KCOHO. Part of The Music of Budapest, Prague, and Vienna.

Video 2/12/2012: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play Concertos No. 10 and No. 11 from Vivaldi’s L’estro armonico and Schoenberg’s Verklarte Nacht.

Video 12/1/2011: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO perform Dvorák’s Piano Trio No. 3 in F minor and Fauré’s Piano Quintet No. 2.

Video 6/14/2011: The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play Vincent Gambaro’s Quartet No. 3 and Rossini’s Andante, and Theme and Variations for Flute, Clarinet, Horn, and Bassoon.

Video 5/27/2011: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra perform Beethoven’s Violin Sonata No. 7 in C minor, Op.30, No. 2 and Johannes Brahms Trio in A minor, Op. 114.

Video 4/2/2011: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members play Beethoven’s Septet in E-flat major, Op. 20.

Video 2/19/2011: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

KCOHO members Pianist Oksana Skidan, violinist Eric Lee, viola player Uri Wassertzug, cellist Igor Zubkovsky, clarinetist David Jones, and French horn player Geoff Pilkington play Dohnányi’s Sextet in C major and more.

Video 5/28/2010: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra play classical works.

Video 4/15/2010: Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Members of the KCOHO play classical works.

Video 3/19/2010: The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra

Violinist Jessica Fan, cellist Tim Butler, and pianist Narciso Solero play Brahms’s Piano Trio No. 1 and Prokofiev’s Violin Sonata No. 2.

The Kennedy Center Opera House Orchestra