Deutsche Philharmonie Merck is named after the family of pharmacists, Merck, who in 1668 laid the foundation for the oldest pharmaceutical-chemical company in theworld, today a leading science and technology company. The family's lineage includes Johann Heinrich Merck, who was a friend and sponsor of the poet Johann Wolfgang Goethe, and the family had before that always been known for their support of the arts. Deutsche Philharmonie Merck still feels the family's cultural commitment in a very special way.

The orchestra has its origins in the 'instrumental group at Merck' which was formed by music-loving employees in 1966. Over the years, the company orchestra has become one of the most competitive orchestras on the German music scene and according to the press is 'an orchestra headed straight to the top'. The orchestra now consists of up to 100 professional musicians and celebrated its 50th anniversary in the 2016/2017 season. Its repertoire includes all styles from Baroque, Classical and Romantic to contemporary music and crossover projects such as jazz and film music, as well as special projects for children and young people.

Deutsche Philharmonie Merck is also a frequent invitee to international stages. In addition to numerous concert tours in almost all European countries, with destinations such as Amsterdam, Barcelona, Brussels, Cambridge, Lisbon, Paris, Trondheim, Vilnius and Vienna, the orchestra has also repeatedly performed far further afield. For example, the musicians have travelled to Brazil and Mexico more than once, and at the invitation of the Goethe-Institut and the German Foreign Office to the 'German Festival in India' for concerts in the Indian metropolitan cities of Mumbai, Bangalore, Calcutta and New Delhi. The cities of Tel Aviv and Istanbul are also filling up the orchestra's increasingly wide-ranging tour schedule.