The Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO)

About Us

Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra (JPO) is a not-for-profit and a public benefit organisation which was originally formed in May 2000 following the demise of the National Symphony Orchestra. The JPO went into business rescue in 2012, however, it was relaunched in August 2017 with a revitalised vision, a new brand identity and a diverse board of directors which is comprised of captains of industry and credible community leaders. The board is chaired by former Deputy Chief Justice, Dikgang Moseneke, with arts manager and Juilliard School trained singer, Bongani Tembe, as the Chief Executive and Artistic Director. The relaunch of the JPO affirmed the organisation’s aspiration to be internationally recognised for artistic excellence, innovation, education initiatives and community engagement programmes.

Patron: His Excellency President Cyril Ramaphosa, South Africa

Board of Directors
  • Justice Dikgang Moseneke (Chairman)
  • Bongani Tembe (Chief Executive & Artistic Director)
  • Stephen Jurisich
  • Busi Mabuza
  • Mandla Nkomfe
  • Nonkululeko Nyembezi
  • Seth Phalatse
  • Mahmoud Rajab
  • Malcolm Segal
  • Colin Smith
  • Carolyn Steyn
Administrative Staff
staff 1
Bongani Tembe

Chief Executive & Artistic Director

staff 2
Polina Burdukova

Artistic Planning and Production Manager

  • Selishia Govender – Personal Assistant
  • Rosie Katz – Subscriptions and Ticket Sales
  • Patricia Mampani – Office Administrator
  • Matthew Downey – Librarian and Percussionist
Notable Past Achievements & Activities


Apr 19 2000


During 2000, the JPO utilized its own scant resources to present 15 concerts that included international guest conductors and world-renowned soloists. Since inception, the JPO has presented Symphony Seasons every year, mostly with the assistance of corporate sponsorship, individual donations,..Read More

Apr 19 2004


In 2004, the JPO released the internationally acclaimed world premiere recording of the Samuel Coleridge-Taylor Violin Concerto. In the same year, the JPO commissioned and performed the world premiere of ‘A Mandela Portrait’ in recognition of the 10 years of..Read More

Apr 19 2007


In 2007, the JPO became a full-time orchestra with permanent musicians on annual contracts. The JPO performed at the Union Buildings on 2009 for the Inauguration of President Jacob Zuma.

Apr 19 2010


In 2009, the JPO was awarding funding for a three year period by the National Lottery Distribution Trust Fund.In 2009, the JPO provided recordings for the opening and closing ceremonies of the FIFA Confederations Cup. In 2010, the JPO was..Read More

Apr 19 2011


2011 saw the JPO collaborate with the popular act, Die Antwoord, at the South African Music Awards. In addition to the symphony concerts, the JPO has performed: Queen: The Concert The Jo’burg Pops concerts The Jacaranda Pops concerts ‘La Traviata’..Read More

Apr 19 2013


The JPO has also prominently featured in TV advertisements for both Standard Bank and Old Mutual. A grant of R 12,5M was approved by the National Lottery Development Trust Fund in July 2013, and enabled the JPO to continue with..Read More

Apr 19 2014


In 2014, the JPO continued with the tradition of performing Symphony Seasons, but also performed at the Miracle Drive event in Sandton, the Melting Pot Choral Competition in Mpumalanga, and backed hip hop artist Nas at the Castle Lite Extra..Read More

Apr 19 2015


The orchestra travelled to Azerbaijan in late July and performed 6 concerts, to great acclaim, at the Gabala International Music Festival – the first international performances by the JPO. Now in its 15th year, the JPO’s musicians remain passionate about seeing..Read More
The JPO strives to be nationally and internationally recognized as the country’s leading philharmonic orchestra, and to ensure the ongoing sustainability and growth of music traditions, nurturing the accessibility of music to a broader community.
Johannesburg Philharmonic Orchestra