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what is an orchestra?

1 August 2019

Simply put, the music ensembles that come together to perform a particular piece of music are called the orchestra.

Of course not every band is an orchestra and they have some small details! But the orchestra is actually a very general term.

Chamber Orchestra, Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonic Orchestra

More specifically, there are two basic types of orchestra: the chamber orchestra and the symphony orchestra.

Chamber Orchestra:   This is the name given to small groups of 50 or less musicians. Chamber orchestras were established to accompany small aristocracy meetings in ancient times. Particularly in the 17th and 18th centuries, important artists such as Haydn, Mozart and Vivaldi have fallen on them. Although there is no expectation for the variety of instruments of chamber orchestras, most chamber orchestras are composed of stringed instruments.

Symphony Orchestra:   The symphony orchestras are located above the chamber orchestras in terms of both the number of musicians it hosts and the variety of instruments. There are over 100 artists in a typical symphony orchestra and the instruments are divided into strings such as string, wind and percussion. Beethoven, Brahms and Wagner directed the music of the 19th century with their symphonies.

And there's the Philharmonic! Although it has a different name, the philharmonic orchestras do not differ from the symphony orchestras in terms of their technical characteristics. The difference is that Philharmonic orchestras are founded and financed by foundations and the private sector. Symphony orchestras are supported by public institutions and organizations.

Elements of the Orchestra

Although the number of instruments that can be included in an orchestra varies from community to community, there is usually a hierarchy between these instruments or groups of instruments.

Who is the conductor?
At the very beginning of this hierarchical order, the person who directs everyone is called the conductor (orchestra chief).

The conductor is present in most orchestras, but some modern orchestras also perform without conductors. This is often the case in small orchestras, or especially in communities that interpret works in a particular musical period.

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The repertoires of symphony orchestras are mainly composed of Western classical music or opera pieces. But there are also orchestras specialized in music genres such as soundtracks, game music, popular or jazz music. In our next article, we have listed the our top 5 orchestras. Click!

You can fascinated by an orchestra that moves in harmony. Luckily, today we are able to watch and listen to valuable music groups. To become a musician in an orchestra, you don't have to be the world's number one artist, but you need a solid knowledge of music.

Fortunately, we're also lucky to have access to quality music - one more thing - online music lessons! With musiconline, you can enjoy online music lessons anytime, anywhere. As long as you have a computer and a proper internet connection, music is as close as a few clicks to you!

Knowledge increases as it is shared!

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