The National Symphony Orchestra was founded in the 1940s when it was laying down an average of 10 records a year for Decca with famous conductors and soloists.
The NSO also recorded the music for many films, including: “Brief Encounter”, “Caesar and Cleopatra”, “The Magic Box” and have appeared in films, such as Stephen Fry’s “Bright Young Things” and “De-Lovely”, the film of the life of Cole Porter for MGM with Kevin Kline and Robbie Williams.
Throughout World War 2 almost all of the NSO’s musicians were active personnel and therefore unlike many other orchestras, who relied on musicians were either too old or otherwise unfit for military service, the orchestra was composed of young men. The records made between 1944 and 1946 are considered by experts to be outstanding, especially when compared with pre-war orchestras.
More recently the NSO has recorded, in their entirety, more than 40 complete major classic musicals. This significant compilation has contributed to the fact that the NSO is the most recorded orchestra at EMI Abbey Road Studios. The works, marketed mainly in the USA, often sold more than 1.5 million copies per musical, in the case of the recording of Phantom of the Opera and West Side Story. The NSO have also recorded numerous works for film and television and have performed at a number of spectacular televised and recorded concerts.
The NSO is one of the busiest and most highly regarded freelance orchestras in the UK. The NSO choses it’s players not only for their musical talent and technical ability, but also for their desire to give their best.