The Gürzenich Orchestra of Cologne is one of Germany’s leading orchestras and can look back on a great tradition. Its roots extend all the way back to the founding of the Domkapelle (cathedral orchestra) in the fifteenth century. Since 1857 the orchestra has been presenting its ‘community concerts’ of the Cologne Concert Society at the Gürzenich, the Gothic festival hall of the city which is reflected in the orchestra’s name. The ensemble’s excellence has always attracted leading soloists, conductors and composers, including Hector Berlioz, Richard Wagner and Igor Stravinsky. Important works such as Brahms’s Double Concerto, Richard Strauss’s Till Eulenspiegel and Don Quixote as well as Mahler’s Fifth Symphony were entrusted to the Gürzenich Orchestra for their premieres. Since 1986 the ensemble’s home has been at the Cologne Philharmonie, where it presents about 50 concerts annually, while also giving over 160 performances a year at the Cologne Opera. The orchestra’s numerous recordings have won many awards.