Esa-Pekka Salonen to Conduct New York Philharmonic in World Premiere of His Piano Concerto

Classic Arts News   Esa-Pekka Salonen to Conduct New York Philharmonic in World Premiere of His Piano Concerto
Finnish conductor Esa-Pekka Salonen will conduct the New York Philharmonic in the world premiere of his own piano concerto, with Yefim Bronfman as soloist, February 1-3 at Avery Fisher Hall in Lincoln Center.

The concerts mark the first time that Salonen, music director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic, has conducted the New York Philharmonic since 1986. Alongside his piano concerto Salonen will conduct the orchestra in Ravel's Le tombeau de Couperin and Ravel's arrangement of Mussorgsky's Pictures at an Exhibition.

Salonen will discuss his piano concerto, a New York Philharmonic commission, with Steven Stucky at a Hear and Now program on February 6, prior to a complete performance of the work with Bronfman.

Other events surrounding the premiere include a two-day symposium for music educators called "Learning Overtures: Finland — Radical Success in Music Education" on January 31 and February 1 at New York University's Skirball Center for the Performing Arts, which will examine music education in Finland and lessons that can be applied to the United States.

There will also be a joint concert at Merkin Concert Hall with ensembles from the New York metropolitan area and the Sibelius Academy of Helsinki on February 1.

Salonen, who is also principal conductor at the Op_ra-Bastille in Paris and will become principal conductor and artistic advisor of London's Philharmonia Orchestra in 2008, is widely admired among observers for his success in programming new music and making it popular among audiences in Los Angeles.

His own compositions include Concerto for Saxophone (1981-82); Floof, an experimental work for soprano and ensemble (1982); the orchestral work LA Variations (1997), and Five Images After Sappho, a song-cycle for soprano and 14 instruments. (1999)

Most recently, Salonen composed Insomnia (2002) and Wing on Wing (2004), two orchestral pieces that appear together on a Deutsche Grammophon CD.

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