The Windsor & Maidenhead Symphony Orchestra was founded in 1972 as a group of amateur musicians supporting many local productions of light opera and musicals as well as giving concerts in its own right. Since then, the orchestra has grown in size and status and expanded its repertoire to include staples of the classical and contemporary repertoire.
Today, we are composed of around 50 semi-professional and high-standard amateur musicians. Under the guidance of our Music Director, Leon Gee, the orchestra has broadened its horizons further to embrace many of the more challenging works written for large symphonic orchestras. Each year we present three exciting programmes of music at local venues including Eton College School Hall. A recent highlight was our performance of Stravinsky’s The Rite of Spring in 2013, its centenary year.
"Stravinsky's Rite of Spring is one of the most difficult works in the orchestral repertoire and caused an uproar at its premiere. The WMSO not only mastered the notes but captured the raw excitement of Stravinsky's masterpiece in a thrilling performance." Audience feedback
During our 40+ years of performing, we have been invited to play at royal events in Windsor Castle, joint concerts in our European Twin Towns and the firework spectacular at Maidenhead Carnival. We have also premiered music written by composers from our own ranks and from our European Twin Towns.
Young Musicians’ Competition
An important part of our work is to encourage talented young soloists through our annual Young Musicians’ Competition. A winner in 2012 was Martin James Bartlett who went on to become the BBC Young Musician of 2014 and performed with us in the same year. All our competition winners are invited, if appropriate, to perform a concerto with us, and will often perform with us again as they complete their musical training.
Read Leon’s page to find out about his work with young musicians.
We thank WMSO President, Rt Hon Theresa May, MP for Maidenhead for her patronage and support.