The Orchestra was founded in 1936 by the young conductor Mark Paverman, succeeded by principal conductors Valentin Kozhin, Andrey Chistyakov and Andrey Boreiko. Dmitry Liss was appointed principal conductor in 1995. Based in Ekaterinburg, the UPO is one of Russia’s leading orchestras: it presents more than 70 programmes annually and gives more than 100 concerts. Its repertoire includes practically all the significant Russian and Western European symphony classics. The Orchestra also performs the works of famous 20th century composers.
The Orchestra performs in Russia and around the world and has worked under Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Mikhail Pletnev, Vladimir Fedoseev, Dmitri Kitaenko, Jean-Claude Casadesus (France), Fabio Mastrangelo (Italy), Daniel Raiskin (Netherlands) and with major he soloists including Mstislav Rostropovich, Boris Berezovsky, Denis Matsuev, Frederic Kempf (UK), Nikolai Lugansky, Yuri Bashmet, Vadim Repin, Sergey Krylov, Alexander Knyazev, Eliso Virsaladze, Natalia Gutman, Peter Donohoe (UK), Massimo Giordano (Italy) and Olga Borodina.
The Orchestra tours abroad annually (Japan, France, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Spain etc.) and participates in prestigious international festivals including La Folle Journee (Nantes, 2007, 2010, 2011, 2012; Bilbao (2007),Tokyo, 2007,2010,2012), the Festival of the World’s Symphony Orchestras (Moscow, 2007), the Radio France Festival (Montpellier, 2008, 2010), the International Piano Festival at La Roque d’Anthéron (La Roque d’Anthéron, 2008, 2010), the classical music festival at Saint-Riquier (Saint-Riquier, 2008), the International Winter Festival “Arts Square” (Saint-Petersburg, 2009) and the International Festival “Stars at Baikal” (Irkutsk, 2009). In December 2010 the orchestra performed at the Concert Hall of the Mariinsky Theatre (St.Petersburg) with Vadim Repin and Boris Berezovsky as soloists. The Orchestra’s performance of Rimsky Korsakov’s Scheherezade in December 2011 at the Kennedy Centre in Washington was described by critics as “worthy of the annals of Russian musical history”.
The Orchestra has completed over 20 CD recordings including Warner Classics International and Mirare.
The general management of the Orchestra is held by the agency “Les Productions Internationales Albert Sarfati” (France).