About the Orchestra

Bolton Symphony Orchestra was first formed by Nigel M Taylor who conducted its inaugural performance in 1988, as part of the 150th Anniversary celebrations of Local Government in Bolton. The Orchestra was re-formed in 1993 under the musical direction of Paul Payton. The Orchestra has established a reputation as one of the leading non-professional ensembles in the North due to the high standard of performances and innovative programme planning.

BSO acknowledging applause

BSO contributes significantly to the cultural life of Bolton and also the North West. Recent performances have included Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring, Mahler's 8th Symphony, Bruckner's 8th, and a complete cycle of Beethoven's symphonies. We have performed with many leading international soloists including the violinist Leland Chen and pianist Peter Donohoe.

The Orchestra has recorded two CDs, the most recent being a performance of Ein Helbenleben by Richard Strauss, the other being "A Celebration" that demonstrates the versatility of the Orchestra and includes a BSO-commissioned composition by local composer Ivor Hodgson.

Our membership incorporates the very best of amateur, semi-professional and professional musicians who are drawn from throughout the North of England. The Orchestra is totally self-financed, funded by a mixture of subscriptions, sponsorship, box office and our Friends Association. We are always interested in hearing from people who would like to play in, hire or help the orchestra in some way.