Performing Great Music • Encouraging Young Talent • Supporting Local Charities

Founded in 1919

The Guildford Symphony Orchestra is the borough’s premier community orchestra, and currently the only local orchestra offering a full, large-scale symphonic repertoire.


Guildford Symphony Orchestra Centenary Season 2018/19

Next year will be the GSO’s hundredth season. Centenary celebrations are in an advanced stage of planning, with highlights including a guest appearance at St John’s, Smith Square in London, a written history of the orchestra, and a special centenary concert in Autumn 2019 to feature Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony.

Calling Young Musicians – Jellinek Competition Opens

We are now accepting entry forms for the 2018/19 Jellinek Competition. The five winning finalists will play concerto movements with the GSO in the Una Clark Young Artists’ Concert on Sunday 17th February 2019. This is one of the most popular events in our calendar, and the standard is invariably spectacular – two winners subsequently went on to be finalists in the BBC Young Musician of the Year competition, and finalists often return to the orchestra as full soloists in our major concerts. Application forms can be downloaded here.


2018-2019 Season

Family Concert – Animal Magic

The GSO’s centenary season kicks off with the latest in our much-loved series of Family Concerts. Regular narrator David Leonard (better known as the dastardly Miss Trunchbull in the stage play of Roald Dahl’s Matilda) returns to give his uniquely lupine take on Prokofiev’s much-loved Peter and the Wolf.

FAMILY CONCERT – Animal MagicSunday 7th October at 3.30 pm, St Catherine’s School, Bramley
The Lion’s Royal FanfareDaniels
Tame Bears, Wild BearsElgar
Flight of the BumblebeeRimsky-Korsakov
Dance of the CygnetsTchaikovsky
Angry Rat & Jolly Elephantsarr Richards
Cuckoo PolkaStrauss
The Ostrich and HippoPonchielli
Peter and the WolfProkofiev
Gallop from William TellRossini
David Leonard – Narrator BOX OFFICE

Russian Masterpieces


Russian MasterpiecesSaturday 24th November at 7.30 pm, GLive
Festival OvertureShostakovich
 Piano Concerto No. 3Rachmaninov
Symphony no 6 – PathetiqueTchaikovsky
Masa Tayama – Solo Piano BOX OFFICE

Una Clark Young Artists’ Concert

One of the most popular concerts in the GSO calendar, five award-winning young soloists perform concerto movements with the orchestra and receive the Jellinek prize. The standard is invariably superb – two recent alumni have subsequently become BBC Young Musician of the Year finalists – and is a chance for Guildford music-lovers to see some of tomorrow’s real stars at the start of their careers.

YOUNG ARTISTS’ CONCERTSunday 17th February at 3.30pm, St Catherine’s Schoo
Programme TBC
Outstanding young soloists from the Guildford area perform concerto movements with the orchestra and are awarded the prestigious Jellinek prize. BOX OFFICE

Spring Concert – Rhapsody & Fantasia


As a particular highlight of our centenary, the GSO is thrilled to be performing at one of London’s premiere classical venues, St John’s, Smith Square. In addition to two concertante pieces by contemporary composer John Rand, we will be playing works by three of the greatest British composers, all of whom conducted the GSO in its early years: Elgar, Walton and Vaughan Williams

Rhapsody & FantasiaSaturday 23rd March at 7.30 pm, St John’s, Smith Square, London
Coronation March – Crown ImperialWalton
Irish RhapsodyRand
Greensleeves FantasiaVaughan Williams
Piano Concerto No 5Rand
Symphony No 1Elgar
Alan Brown – Solo Piano BOX OFFICE

SPACE – the Final Frontier

Saturday 18th May, 7.30pm – G Live


SPACE – the Final FrontierSaturday 18th May at 7.30 pm, GLive
2001 – a Space OdysseyStrauss
Star TrekGoldsmith
The Shape of Things to ComeBliss
Doctor WhoGrainer
Cosmic Constellations – ConcertoPandeiros
Sea Songs FantasiaWood
Star Wars Williams
ET Williams
The Planets (Mars, Venus, Uranus, Jupiter) Holst
Solo Percussion – Hyungi Lee BOX OFFICE

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