Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks - BRSO

Mariss Jansons – Sibelius: Symphony No. 2

CD: Mariss Jansons – Sibelius: Symphonie Nr. 2 © BR-KLASSIK Label

The best-known and most popular pieces of music by the great Finnish composer Jean Sibelius (1865-1957) are collected on one CD – in interpretations by the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks under the direction of its principal conductor Mariss Jansons.

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The music of the symphonic poem “Finlandia,” op. 26, which was premiered in Helsinki in 1899 as a “historical picture” from Finnish history, delighted Sibelius’ compatriots right away. The work became, in a sense, Finland’s secret national anthem, established itself internationally from 1900 onward, and is world-famous – and not only because of the concluding hymnal chorale. Sibelius’ “Karelia” Suite op. 11, written a few years earlier and referring to the Finnish landscape of Karelia and the sagas of the “Kalevala” epic, was also euphorically received by the national Finnish movement at the time and soon became internationally established. The Symphony No. 2 op. 43, the best known and most popular of his seven completed symphonies, received its premiere in 1902.

May one appreciate Sibelius as an absolute musician or as a Finnish national composer, may one understand his music internationally or – as the Finns do to this day – as an expression of the struggle for the independence of their homeland, it is characteristic and unique and has been able to assert itself in the international concert repertoire. The current interpretations by the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks under the direction of its chief conductor Mariss Jansons were recorded in several Munich concerts in the fall of 2015. They demonstrate the modernity of Sibelius′ symphonies that is still valid today.

Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks
Mariss Jansons conductor

Live recordings:
– Symphony No. 2 in D major op. 43: Munich, Herkulessaal November 2015
– Finlandia op. 26 – Karelia-Suite op. 11: Munich, Philharmonie im Gasteig, Oktober 2015
Total time: 70:18 min.