The Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra (BSO) is an English orchestra with a remit to serve the South and South West of England. Founded in 1893, the BSO has developed a reputation as one of the UK's major orchestras and has worked with many of the world's leading composers, conductors and performers. Originally based in Bournemouth, the BSO moved its offices to the adjacent town of Poole in 1979.
The Orchestra has worked with an esteemed array of Principal Conductors including Sir Dan Godfrey, Rudolf Schwarz, Constantin Silvestri, Paavo Berglund, Andrew Litton and Marin Alsop, with Kirill Karabits the incumbent. It is resident at The Lighthouse, Poole, with other major concert series given at Portsmouth Guildhall, the Great Hall of Exeter University and Colston Hall in Bristol. Shorter series are also given in Bournemouth (Pavilion Theatre) and Basingstoke.
In November 2007, the BSO announced the appointment Kirill Karabits as their 13th Principal Conductor, the first Ukrainian principal conductor of a UK orchestra. Karabits held the title of orchestra's Principal Conductor-Designate for the 2008–2009 season, and became Principal Conductor with the 2009–2010 season. With the BSO, Karabits made his first conducting appearance at The Proms in August 2009.
The BSO's first commercial recording with Karabits (of Rodion Shchedrin's Concertos for Orchestra Nos 4 and 5) was released on the Naxos label in April 2010. The BSO and Karabits have also recorded music of Aram Khachaturian for the Onyx label. In August 2011, the BSO extended Karabits' contract as principal conductor through the 2015–2016 season.
The president of the Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra Council is David Mellor.