The orchestra’s wide repertoire includes Western-European and Russian music of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries as well as late twentieth-century works, and its performances are characterized by their awareness of historical manners of performance. The orchestra flourishes as an ensemble of soloists, and this enables its string band to perform pieces in association with guest musicians. The Musica Viva Chamber Orchestra is renowned for its presentation of unknown and neglected composers and works, including contemporary music.
The orchestra was the first in Russia to perform Johann Christian Bach’s Sinfonia Concertante, Salieri’s Concerto for violin, oboe, cello and orchestra, Schumann’s Requiem Op 148, as well as works by C P E Bach, J-M Kraus, Ignaz Pleyel, Dussek and Dittersdorf, and numerous compositions of Russian composers such as Kozlovsky, Fomin, Gretchaninov, Tcherepnin and others.
Since 1998 ‘Masterpieces and Premieres’, the orchestra’s concert season at the Great Hall of the Moscow Conservatory, has not only pleased audiences with unusual and interesting programmes, but also introduced many world-famous artists who had not previously performed in Russia. One of most significant events in Moscow’s concert life during the late twentieth century was the orchestra’s performance with the conductor Christopher Hogwood, while in November 2002 Sir Roger Norrington gave his only Russian concert with the orchestra.
The Musica Viva Chamber Orchestra has performed with many outstanding soloists, including Natalie Gutman, Igor Oistrakh, Victor Pikaizen, Victor Tretyakov, Yuri Bashmet, Alexei Lubimov, Vladimir Krainev, Nikolai Petrov, Elisso Virsaladze, Sergei Stadler, Dmitri Sitkovetsky and Andras Adorjan. Musica Viva is a participant in many international musical festivals, such as Kammermusikpodium (Germany), Oleg Kagan-Musikfest (Germany), La Folle Journée (France), La Roque D’Antheron International Piano Festival (France), Pablo Casals Festival (France), Cannes Chamber Music Festival (France), and Il Delfino (Italy).