Thursday 7 Dec 2017, 7:30pmRoyal Festival Hall, London
Philharmonia Box Office : 020 7921 3907
Esa-Pekka Salonen conductor
Vilde Frang violin
Sibelius Violin Concerto
Sibelius Lemminkäinen Legends
One hundred years since Finland first declared independence, Esa-Pekka Salonen leads the Philharmonia Orchestra in a celebration centred on Finland’s greatest composer, Jean Sibelius. Opening with Finlandia, which started life as a musical contribution to a political demonstration in Helsinki in 1899 before its reworked version went on to propel Sibelius to worldwide fame, violinist Vilde Frang then takes to the stage for Sibelius’s soulful, fantastical Violin Concerto.
Sibelius’ Lemminkäinen Legends draw inspiration from four episodes of the Kalevala, a collection of ancient Finnish myths interspersed with spells, charms and songs. Lemminkäinen, a ‘handsome man with a far-roving mind,’ visits the mysterious island of brides and widows; attempts to slay the Swan of Tuonela; experiences his own death, before his mother intervenes and magically stitches his tattered body back together; and finally, makes his tired, triumphant journey home.