The in Tokyo, Japan began as the New Symphony Orchestra on October 5, 1926 and was the country's first professional symphony orchestra. Later, it changed its name to Japan Symphony Orchestra and in 1951, after receiving financial support from NHK, it took its current name. It is considered to be the leading orchestra in Japan.
In December 1962 the orchestra was a center of controversy when certain players, unhappy with the style and personality of conductor Seiji Ozawa, refused to play under him. Ozawa went on to conduct the rival Japan Philharmonic Orchestra instead.