The Copenhagen Phil dates its history back to 1843, when Georg Carstensen opened the Tivoli Gardens in Copenhagen. To take charge of the music in Tivoli he engaged the popular composer and conductor H.C. Lumbye and his orchestra, ‘The Lumbye Society’, which consisted of 22 musicians. Ever since, the orchestra has played in Tivoli every summer. In 1846 the orchestra was expanded to 33 musicians and began to give symphony concerts as the Tivoli Orchestra. But it was not until 1965 that it became possible to give all the musicians permanent employment all year round with the establishment of the ‘Zealand Symphony Orchestra’, now known in English as the Copenhagen Phil. Today the orchestra has 74 permanently engaged musicians and still divides its year between a summer season in Tivoli and the winter season with symphony concerts in Copenhagen and around Zealand.
Today the Copenhagen Phil is a modern cultural institution which offers both the great symphonic musical experiences and works in goal-oriented ways with music teaching and dissemination with children and young people. Every year the orchestra plays more than 115 concerts, opera and ballet performances for audiences totalling more than 85,000.