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Quotes about Sibelius and his Music
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Tapkaara
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PostPosted: Thu Aug 13, 2009 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

kullervopete wrote:

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'In this piece you may find it a matter of some difficulty to keep your places. I think you may do well to imagine yourself disporting on some form of hair-raising locomotion such as Brooklands, or a switchback railway. My advice to you is merely: hold tight and do not let yourselves fall off. I cannot guarantee to help you on again'.

Sir Thomas Beecham was once rehearsing 'Lemminkainen's return' and he gave his orchestra the above advice.--kp


Great quote and even better caricature! Oh, that Sir Thomas...

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kullervopete
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 03, 2009 9:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

'In my opinion, the music of Sibelius does not lend itself to comparison or classification. It is like a meteorite that fell from the sky'-- Herbert von Karajan, conductor.

Interesting analogy from the man that Sibelius considered the best conductor of his music towards the end of his life. Karajan is surely right. More than fifty years after his death, Sibelius is a composer who still refuses to be pigeon-holed.--kp

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 9:47 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

'I believe that in the years to come, due in part to the unique psychological dimensions of his music, Sibelius will be recognized as the most important composer of the 20th Century, and perhaps of all time'.--Dr. Jozan Dirk Mosig.

The above quote is taken from a presentation [The archetypal power of Sibelius] Dr. Mosig gave at the third international Jean Sibelius conference in Helsinki in 2000.
Dr. Mosig is a professor of Psychology and a Zen Buddhist. He is also an 8th degree black belt.


Sibelius described his Fourth Symphony as a 'Psychological Symphony' and I have always felt that much of his music originates from deep in the human psyche. Dr. Mosig makes a big claim for Sibelius's ultimate position in music, but one that I would certainly not rule out.--kp


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Dr. Jozan Dirk Mosig.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 21, 2009 10:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kullervopete wrote:
'I believe that in the years to come, due in part to the unique psychological dimensions of his music, Sibelius will be recognized as the most important composer of the 20th Century, and perhaps of all time'.--Dr. Jozan Dirk Mosig.


I wouldn't doubt this statement for a moment... once people get their minds off of the first four notes of Beethoven's fifth or the last 30 seconds or so of the 1812 overture by... who was it again???
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 26, 2009 4:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kullervopete wrote:
Dr. Mosig is a professor of Psychology and a Zen Buddhist. He is also an 8th degree black belt.

So in other words, don't mess with him. Wink
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 31, 2009 11:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

'He appears to make frequent stays in Berlin, London and Paris, where the decadence of Debussy, Strauss and Elgar is highly catching! We must therefore take leave of the former Sibelius, the enchanting interpreter of his homeland'.

This comment appeared in a St Petersburg Newspaper following a performance of Sibelius's third Symphony in 1907.
Elgar decadent--the mind boggles!
-- Laughing --kp

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PostPosted: Mon Jan 04, 2010 11:42 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


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'A man came to see me a few days ago, and he asked me about the definition of my music. I was amazed. Definition of my music! I can't say anything about it'--Jean Sibelius [1934]

When one thinks today of people from the arts world and indeed of popular culture, they are invariably falling over themselves to advertise their wares and get maximum publicity. JS let his music do the talking.--kp

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Last edited by kullervopete on Wed Aug 22, 2012 7:51 am; edited 1 time in total
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PostPosted: Tue May 24, 2011 1:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

'Only for a brief moment...it feels like a strong ray of sunlight breaking its way through darkness, the clouds and revealing the reality of all that lies below'--Richard Brown.

I like this quote very much. No prizes for guessing that it refers to the celebrated trombone solo from Sibelius seventh symphony. Richard is principle trombone in the BBC Philharmonic Orchestra.--kp

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 8:25 am    Post subject: Reply with quote


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'SIBELIUS WAS LIKE AN EXPLOSION IN MY HEAD' --GUSTAVO DUDAMEL.


Superstar young Venezuelan conductor Gustavo Dudamel is conductor of the Gothenburg SO and music director of Los Angeles PO. I suspect that most members of the forum can identify with his sentiments.--kp

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 8:39 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kullervopete wrote:

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'SIBELIUS WAS LIKE AN EXPLOSION IN MY HEAD' --GUSTAVO DUDAMEL.


Superstar young Venezuelan conductor Gustavo Dudamel is conductor of the Gothenburg SO and music director of Los Angeles PO. I suspect that most members of the forum can identify with his sentiments.--kp


I have to admit, Dudamel's "wunderkind" persona and histrionics while conducting got old with me really quickly. Has he conducted Sibelius that anyone knows of?

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PostPosted: Mon Jul 18, 2011 12:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I heard Dudamel direct Sibelius 5 at the BBC Proms some years back and I seem to remember that he stood in for another conductor and did not have much rehearsal time. I understand that a recent 'live' Sibelius 2 from Gothenburg will be released by DG plus Bruckner and Nielsen [3 Cd set] must look out for this.-kp

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 1:33 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kullervopete wrote:
I suspect that most members of the forum can identify with his sentiments.

Certainly, but not with his conducting. Enough said.

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PostPosted: Fri Jul 29, 2011 9:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kurkikohtaus wrote:
kullervopete wrote:
I suspect that most members of the forum can identify with his sentiments.

Certainly, but not with his conducting. Enough said.


You mean I am not the only one?

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 30, 2011 8:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I can confirm that Dudamels live Sibelius 2 from Gothenburg is now available on DG 477 944-9 [3 CD's] at reduced price. Includes major works by Bruckner and Nielsen.--kp

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PostPosted: Sun Jul 31, 2011 10:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I haven't heard Dudamel conduct anything major yet, by any composer. Thus I'm rather looking forward to the G'bg Second... I feel it will be an experience, at the very least.

Kurki and Tapkaara, your warnings are duly noted. Incidentally I've heard that some orchestras refer to another star conductor of the same generation. Yannick Nézet-Séguin, as 'Dudamel with a brain'.

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PostPosted: Wed Aug 24, 2011 1:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a nice one. It wasn't said specifically about Sibelius, but it is from his great friend and champion Rosa Newmarch (who, I believe, was discussing music critics with Delius at the time), and I think we can use it whenever some numbskull critic has a go at the music.

'A fine creative work will flourish on paltry criticism as a plant benefits from guano spread on its roots.'

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PostPosted: Thu Sep 01, 2011 3:28 am    Post subject: Dudamel Sibelius Reply with quote

I see Classic FM the UK radio station which also broadcasts via the internet is having 2 hours of Dudamel starting 8pm UK time on Monday September 5th. The Sibelius 2nd is the first item and the Nielsen 4th , both I assume from the new Gothenburg CD the last with Tchaikovsky the Tempest with the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra in-between.

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PostPosted: Mon Sep 05, 2011 2:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Heard Dudamel's sibelius second on the radio classic fm tonight. To my mind the best seconds sing along naturally and in a glorious celebratory fashion. This is not one of them, certainly in parts I found it gruff or coarse.

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PostPosted: Tue Sep 06, 2011 8:16 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

pmg wrote:
Heard Dudamel's sibelius second on the radio classic fm tonight. To my mind the best seconds sing along naturally and in a glorious celebratory fashion. This is not one of them, certainly in parts I found it gruff or coarse.

PMG


I too listened to the radio. On the strength of Dudamel's performance I won't be ordering the CD set. But I found several elements to admire. The opening of the first movement was taken at a measured pace which I liked. Dudamel wisely stepped up a gear during the first pizzicato passage and the tension built up nicely. In the second movement Dudamel managed to avoid that 'plodding' effect that one gets from certain conductors, yes it was 'gruff' in places but I guess thats Sibelius! I heard much poetry, such as that little trumpet solo exchange with the flute. In fact the woodwind playing was outstanding throughout the symphony. In the third movement I especially admired the way the cellos answered the repeated notes of the oboe. It is not difficult for a second rate talent to impress in this wonderful music. Did Dudamel bring anything special to the finale--I don't think so. It was well paced and pretty thrilling as so many other performances. The live recording was fairly good with forward woodwind and rich strings but the brass and timpani were a little recessed for my taste. Interestingly Dudamel did not hold the strings during the final brass chords. Clearly the maestro was following the written score to the letter and not doing his own thing. My verdict then : A decent account which revealed many poetic insights but in the final analysis not up with my personal list of greats, but I will certainly watch out for more Sibelius from Dudamel--he could mature into a great Sibelian.--kp

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 01, 2012 12:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just read through all 4 pages of this thread, what a wonderful collection of quotes, many of which I've never had the pleasure of reading!

I think Sibelius' music, to me, feels more often like an explosion in the heart. There are so many instances when I feel my chest swelling with the music, can't keep it inside, often ending with tears in my eyes.

I can also identify with the feeling of a black hole in some of his music, like the ending of the 4th. Not so much a vacuum effect, but perhaps a sense of flat, collapsing desolation. Strangely, that sometimes makes my heart want to burst too.

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