The Kharkiv Festival Orchestra is a symphony orchestra that has been meeting annually since 2018 as part of KharkivMusicFest. Over the years it has featured musicians from the world’s leading orchestras, such as the Lucerne Festival Orchestra, BBC Symphony Orchestra, Czech Philharmonic Orchestra, Royal Stockholm Philharmonic Orchestra, Belgian National Orchestra, Georgian and Slovak Philharmonic Orchestras and others. Some of the orchestra’s members are also concert soloists and members of chamber ensembles, performing at many of the world’s most prestigious concert venues.
The idea of the orchestra was not only to create high-quality symphony concerts, but also to create new cultural bridges between musicians from Europe, Australia, the USA, the Middle East and the Caucasus with musicians from Ukraine gathered on one stage in Kharkiv.
Since its foundation, the orchestra has performed with various soloists, such as Vaclav Dvořák, Agata Šimčevska, Till Hoffmann, under the direction of conductors such as Fakhraddin Kerimov, Ivan Cherednichenko, Stanislav Khristenko and others.
During the pandemic the Kharkiv Festival Orchestra gained a new Ukrainian context, featuring the best musicians from leading Ukrainian philharmonic and theatre orchestras such as the National Symphony Orchestra of Ukraine, Lviv, Odessa and Kharkiv Philharmonic Orchestras, and the orchestras of Odessa, Kharkiv, Lviv and Kyiv Opera Houses.
The present music director of the orchestra is festival artistic director and conductor Vitali Alekseenok.