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Stream – Sunlight on water: Sibelius and Beethoven

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Booking for Friends of the Philharmonia opens at 10am on Thursday, 1 July. General booking opens Thursday, 8 July.


Santtu-Matias Rouvali – conductor
Pekka Kuusisto – violin


Sibelius Violin Concerto

Beethoven Symphony No. 6, Pastoral

A conductor who feels most at home in the Finnish forest, and a violinist who is a vocal supporter of environmental campaigns, join forces for the final concert in the Philharmonia’s Human / Nature series.

Pekka Kuusisto is the Philharmonia’s Featured Artist for the 2021/22 season. He joins his compatriot, Principal Conductor Santtu-Matias Rouvali, in a piece that flows through the veins of every Finnish musician: Sibelius’s powerful and profound Violin Concerto. It’s hard to resist reaching for similes from the natural world to describe Sibelius’s music, and The Times called a recent performance of this masterpiece by Kuusisto ‘as silvery and fleeting as winter sunlight on water.’

Sibelius’s moody, intense musical landscapes are a far cry from the world of Beethoven’s ‘Pastoral’ Symphony. Beethoven conjures up a countryside idyll as perhaps only a city-dwelling Romantic can – a place of gently bubbling streams, birdsong, and, in the third movement, ‘a merry gathering of country folk’. Even the dramatic fourth movement, full of timpani thunder, brings us safely to the finale, ‘Cheerful and thankful feelings after the storm.’ Beethoven knew first hand the power of spending time in nature to bring solace from the storms and stresses of work and ill-health. He gave that solace to his city listeners in music that still brings us joy today.

Need to know

Prices & Discounts


How to book

You will need to book this streamed concert in a separate transaction to any tickets you are purchasing for live events.

When and where

This concert was filmed at Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, and will premiere on Thursday 16 December at 7.30pm. It was filmed on 2 December 2021.

How can I watch

You will get an email on the day of the premiere with a unique link to watch the stream. You can watch as many times as you want after that for 30 days. For further details on how to book and watch, visit our FAQs page

Running time

90 minutes

Is this a live performance?

No. This performance is filmed live but it took place on 2 December 2021

Programme notes

Programme notes for this concert will be available a week before the performance

Streamed from Southbank Centre

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