The OSIB is considered to be one of the symphonic models in Spain. It was founded in 1988, inside an institution known as Fundació Pública de les Balears per la Música, which includes the Balearic Government, Ajuntament de Palma and Consell de Mallorca.
Although the history of symphonic music in the Balearic Islands dates back to the 1940s, the orchestra as we know it nowadays was created by maestro Luís Remartínez, who was Principal Conductor and Artistic Director from 1988 to 1994. He was followed by maestros Philippe Bender (1994-1997) (2005-2009), Salvador Brotons (1997-2000) (2009-2013), Geoffrey Simon (2001-2002), Edmon Colomer (2002-2005) and Josep Vicent (2013-2014), and Joji Hattori (2014-2018) as title Co-Director. Current Director is maestro Pablo Mielgo.
The OSIB performs a stable season in the scope of symphonic music (concert season at Auditorium de Palma, symphonic concerts in Menorca, Ibiza and Formentera, concert season in Auditorium de Manacor, extraordinary concerts in Majorca), as well as in the lyrical scope (opera seasons with Fundació Teatre Principal de Palma and Amics de l’Òpera de Maó). During the summer season, the OSIB carries out the festival “Estius Simfònics” with Bellver Castle as its main venue, and collaborates with other festivals such as Festival de Pollença or Sunset Classics Festival. Moreover, the OSIB develops a comprehensive educational programme through “Simfònica en família”, and takes music to disadvantaged social groups through the programme “Simfònica en societat”.
One of our main goals is to release the works of Balearic composers. Prove of that is the fact that we hold Antoni Parera Fons as a composer in residence with the première, L’Arxiduc, composed by him and written by Carme Riera, member of the Real Academia Española.
During the last 25 years, the OSIB has accompanied international main solo acts such as Juan Diego Flórez, Frank Peter Zimmermann, Emmanuel Pahud, Khatia Buniatishvili, Giuliano Carmignola, Valentina Nafornita, Celso Albelo, Juan Manuel Cañizares, Kiri Te Kanawa, Teresa Berganza, Joaquín Achúcarro, Piotr Anderszewski, María Bayo, Simón Orfila, Katia and Marielle Labèque and young Francisco Fullana, among others.
The OSIB has played abroad in many occasions. It is worth highlighting our recent trip to Teatro Real de Madrid, together with tenor Juan Diego Flórez; a trip to Zurich for a concert with mezzo Kate Lindsey; the concert at Radio Hall France in Paris, with Khatia Buniatishvili; and the concert at the Civilizations Room at the UN Palace of Nations, in Geneva.
The OSIB has a label which allows us to distribute our recordings across more than 40 music platforms, such as Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music and Goolge Play Music, among others. Today, there are four albums: “Revolució”, with Symphony No.7 by Beethoven and The rite of Spring, by Tchaikovsky; Symphony No. 2 by G. Mahler, and works by Majorcan composers in “Mallorca Suite” by Baltasar Samper; and “Foners”, by Antoni Parera Fons. Besides enjoying these recordings, through them the OSIB displays the talent and international scope of the Balearic Islands, and its institutions prove their firm commitment to support culture as an essential element for the future of the region.
In 2020, the OSIB has received the Gold Medal, the most important award from the Balearic Government.