The SOFIA PHILHARMONIC ORCHESTRA has long established itself as one of the leading institutions in Bulgaria’s musical life, representative of the overall contemporary musical culture of the country. The orchestra’s high artistic achievement is associated with the names of prominent figures such as Sasha Popov, Konstantin Iliev, Dobrin Petkov, Vassil Stefanov, Vladi Simeonov, Vassil Kazandjiev, Dimitar Manolov, Emil Tabakov, Julian Kovatchev, Nayden Todorov, and Martin Panteleev.
Unforgettable in the chronicle of the Philharmonic are the instances of co-operation with personalities such as conductors Bruno Walter, Herman Abendroth, Kurt Masur, Gennady Rozhdestvensky, Valery Gergiev, Yuri Simonov, Yuri Temirkanov, Igor Markevich, Carlo Zecchi, Karl Österreichher, Christoph Eschenbach, Sir Neville Marriner, Charles Dutoit, Marin Alsop, Frédéric Chaslin and others. Soloists who have performed with the orchestra were David Oistrakh, Sviatoslav Richter, Emil Gilels, Alexis Weissenberg, Dmitri Shostakovitch, Mstislav Rostropovich, Vladimir Spivakov, Ruggiero Ricci, Ghena Dimitrova, Jose Carreras, Julian Rachlin, Placido Domingo, Sarah Chang, Thomas Hampson, Yuri Bashmet, Tabea Zimmerman, Elena Bashkirova, Alexandrina Pendachanska, Sonya Yoncheva, Krassimira Stoyanova, Patricia Kopatchinskaya, Maxim Vengerov, Svetlin Rоussev, Angela Gheorghiu, Vadim Repin, Paul Badura-Skoda, Joshua Bell, Dmitri Ratser, Elīna Garanča, Sharon Kam, Viktoria Mullova, Ivo Pogorelić, Martha Argerich and many more world-renowned artists.
The Sofia Philharmonic Orchestra was awarded many prestigious accolades including: “Musician of the Year”, “Golden Lyre”, “Golden Stave”, “Golden Quill”, “Crystal Lyre”, the Honorary Sign of Sofia, the Honorary Sign of the President of Bulgaria.