Esa-Pekka Salonen & Anton Barakhovsky

Thursday, 5 October 2017, 8.00 pm
Munich, Gasteig


Kaija Saariaho
"Lumière et pesanteur"

Jean Sibelius
Symphony No 6 D minor, op 104


Esa-Pekka Salonen
Violin Concerto

Jean Sibelius
Symphony No 7 C major, op 105

Esa-Pekka Salonen, Conductor

Anton Barakhovsky, Violin

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks

Download Programme Booklet in German.

Focus on Finland

An all-Finnish programme is presented by a Finnish conductor, the charismatic Esa-Pekka Salonen, who has been closely associated with the Bavarian Radio Symphony Orchestra since 1984. Central to his programme are two symphonies by the leading Finnish composer Jean Sibelius. The evening’s principal discovery is Sibelius’s Sixth Symphony in D minor, which is almost never performed here, a situation that defies comprehension in that this religiously coloured work reveals an interiority and a melodiousness that are both profoundly affecting. The Sixth Symphony dates from 1923. A year later Sibelius completed his Seventh Symphony. It was to be his last. At times it recalls Bruckner’s monumentality, before growing expansive towards the end and striking a hymn-like note that culminates in the purest C major. Framed by these two symphonies is Salonen’s Violin Concerto, in which the virtuoso solo part is taken by the orchestra’s leader, the Russian violinist Anton Barakhovsky. As a composer Salonen has made a name for himself with sensuous music that is accessible to a broad public. With its suggestive and magical sonorities and its use of jazz rhythms, his Violin Concerto is a work of valediction that was written to mark the end of his tenure with the Los Angeles Philharmonic in 2009. The opening work on the programme also dates from 2009 and fits perfectly into this context: it is Finnish composer Kaija Saariaho’s own concert arrangement of the eighth station of “La Passion de Simone”, her oratorio on the life of the French philosopher Simone Weil. Written for Salonen, this independent orchestral miniature is titled “Lumière et pesanteur” and raises the antitheses of light and gravity to mystical cosmic heights.

Concert video of Salonen (2015)

On 16 January 2015 Esa-Pekka Salonen conducted the symphony no. 5 by Sibelius. It was part of a quite nordic programme with works by Hillborg and Grieg. The soloist of the piano concerto by Grieg was Alice Sara Ott.

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