About us


The HPO was founded in 1981 as Harrogate Pro Musica and is a semi-professional chamber orchestra of about 32 regular players. We specialise in baroque and classical repertoire mainly, together with more modern works for smaller orchestras. From the Concerts link you can see our future programmes, and the Reviews link shows opinions of our past performances.

Its players, many of whom are professional and trained musicians, are drawn from a wide area, attracted by its diverse and challenging repertoire. The orchestra encourages young musicians from the local area both as regular players and as concerto soloists.

Through its long history the orchestra has been under the baton of many highly reputed regular and guest conductors including John Forsyth, Nick Meredith, Eno Koço, Phil Wilby, John Anderson, David Andrews and the composer Arthur Butterworth.

The Harrogate Philharmonic is registered charity no.701239

George Kennaway (conductor)

George Kennaway is a cellist, conductor, teacher, and musicologist. Born in Edinburgh, he studied at the universities of Newcastle and Oxford, the Salzburg Mozarteum, the Guildhall School of Music, and the University of Leeds. He was a member of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, moving in 1980 to become principal cello no. 2 in the Orchestra of Opera North until 2008. He currently performs as a soloist and chamber music player, on modern and historical cello. He studied conducting with Otmar Suitner and George Hurst, and has conducted orchestras in the UK, Russia, Uzbekistan, Kazakhstan, Italy, and Lithuania. He holds a PhD in 19th-century cello performance practice, and has published articles on topics related to editions and historical performance practice; his book Playing The Cello 1780-1930 is to be published in 2014. He holds visiting research fellowships at the universities of Leeds and Huddersfield and is tutor in opera studies for Rose Bruford College (London). While conductor of the Airedale Symphony Orchestra he won a Performing Right Society Award for innovative programming. George conducted the Russian premiere of Delius's Paris, and the Central Asian premieres of works by Walton and Nicholas Maw, and he is one of few foreign conductors to be invited to conduct contemporary Lithuanian music in Lithuania. He has coached at the Royal Northern College of Music, has given master-classes in Lithuania and Russia, and has taught conducting at Huddersfield University.

Nadiia Ivkovs(leader)


Nadiia studied the violin at the Kharkiv National University of Music and Arts in Ukraine and then joined the orchestra of the Kharkiv National Academic Opera and Ballet Theatre and taught at the P. Tchaikovsky Children's Art School N2. Since moving to the UK she has played with the Northern Ballet Sinfonia and other local orchestras.




HPO at Locomotion


The orchestra and friends at Shildon Railway museum rehearsing for a concert of river and railway music 2019. This was the culmination of "Where the Music takes us" - an Arts Council supported project for primary schools in Yorkshire. We were conducted by Monica Buckland for this event.