It's rare for Esa-Pekka Salonen to be mentioned and pictured here twice in a year, let alone twice in the span of a few days. Or to have two mentions of Sibelius, period. Yet here we are. The L.A. Philharmonic maestro is profiled as the "anti-maestro" of Los Angeles on page 60 of this week's New Yorker. Excerpt of the Arts piece by Alex Ross:
Salonen was born in 1958 and he attended the Sibelius Academy, Finland’s main music school. His work in L.A. has given him new influences; pop-inflected rhythms can be heard in his 2001 piece “Foreign Bodies,” and also in “Helix.” His music elegantly threads together the aristocratic complexity of his European musical training and the blunt energy of his adopted city. Early in his tenure at L.A. Phil, aggressive programming of thorny European works led to a sharp drop in attendance, but Salonen became savvier about mixing the old and the new. The L.A. Phil now sells a respectable ninety-two per cent of its tickets.
Here's last week's Salonen and Sibelius post. Also in this week's New Yorker, John Updike reviews the new book on legendary Angeleno of yore Aimee Semple McPherson and Anthony Lane celebrates Barbara Stanwyck.