The Swedish Chamber Orchestra was founded in 1995 in Örebro with the ambition of becoming the best in Sweden. In the autumn of 1997, Thomas Dausgaard became the ensemble’s Principal Conductor, immediately setting a demanding and ambitious plan into action: to perform and record all of Beethoven’s orchestral works. It was during these formative years that the orchestra found its unique sound and started to gain international recognition.

Together with Thomas Dausgaard the orchestra has regularly undertaken world tours including performances at the Salzburg Festival, BBC Proms and New York’s Lincoln Center. In December 2015 the Swedish Chamber Orchestra launched the Bach Brandenburg Project – a three year venture focusing on six new commissions inspired by the Brandenburg concertos from leading international composers Uri Caine, Brett Dean, Anders Hillborg, Olga Neuwirth, Steve Mackey and Marc Antony Turnage. Each concerto features an international soloist and the orchestra will perform the original concertos alongside their new counterparts both at home in Sweden and extensively on tour with the support of the European Concert Hall Organisation.

The long-standing collaboration with Dausgaard has resulted in an increasingly broad repertoire with recordings of works by composers that include Schumann, Schubert, Brahms, Bruckner, Tchaikovsky, Dvořák and Wagner. Close collaborations with composers such as H K Gruber and Brett Dean have made the orchestra one of the most ambitious contemporary ensembles in Europe. And the intensive collaboration with Andrew Manze has bolstered the orchestra’s confidence in both baroque and classicism.

In May 2017 the Swedish Chamber Orchestra announced Martin Fröst as its new Chief Conductor commencing with the start of the 2019/20 season. The three-year contract marks a new chapter in Fröst’s musical life, who in recent years has been increasingly active as a conductor, whilst continuing to perform and push boundaries as a clarinettist. Thomas Dausgaard will retain his close association with the orchestra as Conductor Laureate.