Jean Sibelius


Born: Dec 8, 1865; Finland   Died: Sep 20, 1957; Finland   Period: 20th Century
Finland's Jean Sibelius is perhaps the most important composer associated with nationalism in music and one of the most influential in the development of the symphony and symphonic poem. Sibelius was born in southern Finland, the second of three children. His physician father left the family bankrupt, owing to his financial extravagance, a trait that, along with heavy drinking, he would pass on to Jean. Jean showed talent on the violin and at age Read more nine composed his first work for it, Rain Drops. In 1885 Sibelius entered the University of Helsinki to study law, but after only a year found himself drawn back to music. He took up composition studies with Martin Wegelius and violin with Mitrofan Wasiliev, then Hermann Csillag. During this time he also became a close friend of Busoni. Though Sibelius auditioned for the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, he would come to realize he was not suited to a career as a violinist.
In 1889 Sibelius traveled to Berlin to study counterpoint with Albert Becker, where he also was exposed to new music, particularly that of Richard Strauss. In Vienna he studied with Karl Goldmark and then Robert Fuchs, the latter said to be his most effective teacher. Now Sibelius began pondering the composition of the Kullervo Symphony, based on the Kalevala legends. Sibelius returned to Finland, taught music, and in June 1892, married Aino Järnefelt, daughter of General Alexander Järnefelt, head of one of the most influential families in Finland. The premiere of Kullervo in April 1893 created a veritable sensation, Sibelius thereafter being looked upon as the foremost Finnish composer. The Lemminkäinen suite, begun in 1895 and premiered on April 13, 1896, has come to be regarded as the most important music by Sibelius up to that time.
In 1897 the Finnish Senate voted to pay Sibelius a short-term pension, which some years later became a lifetime conferral. The honor was in lieu of his loss of an important professorship in composition at the music school, the position going to Robert Kajanus. The year 1899 saw the premiere of Sibelius' First Symphony, which was a tremendous success, to be sure, but not quite of the magnitude of that of Finlandia (1899; rev. 1900).
In the next decade Sibelius would become an international figure in the concert world. Kajanus introduced several of the composer's works abroad; Sibelius himself was invited to Heidelberg and Berlin to conduct his music. In March 1901, the Second Symphony was received as a statement of independence for Finland, although Sibelius always discouraged attaching programmatic ideas to his music. His only concerto, for violin, came in 1903. The next year Sibelius built a villa outside of Helsinki, named "Ainola" after his wife, where he would live for his remaining 53 years. After a 1908 operation to remove a throat tumor, Sibelius was implored to abstain from alcohol and tobacco, a sanction he followed until 1915. It is generally believed that the darkening of mood in his music during these years owes something to the health crisis.
Sibelius made frequent trips to England, having visited first in 1905 at the urging of Granville Bantock. In 1914 he traveled to Norfolk, CT, where he conducted his newest work The Oceanides. Sibelius spent the war years in Finland working on his Fifth Symphony. Sibelius traveled to England for the last time in 1921. Three years later he completed his Seventh Symphony, and his last work was the incidental music for The Tempest (1925). For his last 30 years Sibelius lived a mostly quiet life, working only on revisions and being generally regarded as the greatest living composer of symphonies. In 1955 his 90th birthday was widely celebrated throughout the world with many performances of his music. Sibelius died of a cerebral hemorrhage in 1957. Read less
Sibelius: Symphonies Nos. 3, 6 & 7 / Vanska, Minnesota Orchestra
Release Date: 09/09/2016   Label: Bis  
Catalog: 2006   Number of Discs: 1
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Landscape & Time - Sibelius, Etc / The King's Singers
Release Date: 11/28/2006   Label: Signum U.k.  
Catalog: 90   Number of Discs: 1
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Work: Valse triste

Browse 26-50 of 126 Available Recordings
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  • 26.
    Sibelius: Symphony No 5, Etc / Schmidt, Mackerras, Royal Po
    Label: Regis   Catalog: 1216 Release Date: 01/29/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius
    Conductor:  Ole Schmidt,  Sir Charles Mackerras
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 27.
    Sibelius: Complete Symphonies / Berglund, Bournemouth SO
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 736002 Release Date: 01/22/2013   Number of Discs: 4
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius
    Conductor:  Paavo Berglund
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra
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  • 28.
    Fifty Shades Of Emotions
    Label: Belmondo   Catalog: 53 Release Date: 11/13/2012   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Antonio Vivaldi,  Samuel Barber,  Claude Debussy,  George Frideric Handel  ... 
    CD: $14.99
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  • 29.
    Sibelius: Symphony No. 2; Finlandia; Valse Triste
    Label: Dg Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 001702202 Release Date: 07/24/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan,  Okko Kamu
    CD: $7.99
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  • 30.
    Grieg & Sibelius Favorites / Mackerras
    Label: Musical Concepts   Catalog: 1191 Release Date: 07/17/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Jean Sibelius
    Performer:  Geoffrey Browne
    Conductor:  Sir Charles Mackerras
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 31.
    Masters Of Classical Music, Vol. 2
    Label: Gega New   Catalog: 246 Release Date: 05/08/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Antonín Dvorák,  Jean Sibelius,  Franz Schubert,  Franz Liszt  ... 
    Conductor:  Vassil Kazandjiev
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  • 32.
    Sibelius: Complete Symphonies, Tone Poems / Colin Davis, Boston Symphony Orchestra [5-CD Collector's Edition]
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001677102 Release Date: 05/08/2012   Number of Discs: 5
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius
    Performer:  Salvatore Accardo
    Conductor:  Sir Colin Davis
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Boston Symphony Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra
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  • 33.
    The Very Best Of Herbert Von Karajan
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 6789922 Release Date: 03/13/2012   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Antonín Dvorák,  Jean Sibelius,  Richard Strauss  ... 
    Performer:  Mstislav Rostropovich,  Gidon Kremer,  James Galway,  Fritz Helmis  ... 
    Conductor:  Herbert von Karajan
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  • 34.
    20th-Century Classics / Marriner, ASMF
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 001553402 Release Date: 05/24/2011   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Igor Stravinsky,  Richard Strauss,  Richard Wagner,  Heinrich Josef Baermann  ... 
    Performer:  Jack Brymer,  John Ogdon,  John Wilbraham,  Michael Laird  ... 
    Conductor:  Sir Neville Marriner
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Academy of St. Martin in the Fields
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  • 35.
    Sibelius: Symphony No 5, En Saga, Swan of Tuonela, Valse Triste / Schmidt, RPO
    Label: Royal Philharmonic Masterworks   Catalog: 28910 Release Date: 05/10/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius
    Conductor:  Ole Schmidt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 36.
    50 Best Berliner Philharmoniker
    Label: Emi Classics   Catalog: 48465 Release Date: 04/19/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Carl Orff,  Claude Debussy,  Hector Berlioz,  Antonín Dvorák  ... 
    Performer:  Yehudi Menuhin,  Leif Ove Andsnes,  Anne-Sophie Mutter,  Mstislav Rostropovich  ... 
    Conductor:  Simon Rattle,  Herbert von Karajan,  Rudolf Kempe,  Mariss Jansons  ... 
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  • 37.
    Finlandia - Sibelius, Grieg, Alfven: Orchestral Works / Ormandy, Philadelphia Orchestra
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 68975 Release Date: 04/05/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Jean Sibelius,  Hugo Alfvén
    Conductor:  Eugene Ormandy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philadelphia Orchestra
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  • 38.
    Classical Strings
    Label: Tgg   Catalog: 60214 Release Date: 02/15/2011   Number of Discs: 3
    Composer:  Luigi Boccherini,  Franz Schubert,  Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov,  Johan Svendsen  ... 
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  • 39.
    Invitation To The Dance / Barenboim, Berlin Philharmonic
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2051849 Release Date: 01/25/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart,  Giuseppe Verdi,  Antonín Dvorák  ... 
    Conductor:  Daniel Barenboim
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
    DVD: $24.99
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  • 40.
    Sibelius: Violin Concerto; Schumann: Symphony No 2 / Sokolov, Ashkenazy
    Label: Juxtapositions   Catalog: 3078748 Release Date: 08/30/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius,  Robert Schumann
    Performer:  Valeriy Sokolov
    Conductor:  Vladimir Ashkenazy
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Chamber Orchestra of Europe
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  • 41.
    Sir John Barbirolli - The Great EMI Recordings - 40th Anniversary
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 57767 Release Date: 03/09/2010   Number of Discs: 10
    Composer:  Hector Berlioz,  Giacomo Puccini,  Sir Edward Elgar,  Johannes Brahms  ... 
    Performer:  Dame Janet Baker,  André Navarra
    Conductor:  Sir John Barbirolli
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Hallé Orchestra,  London Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $68.99
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  • 42.
    Open Air - A Night With The Berliner Philharmoniker
    Label: Euroarts   Catalog: 2051968 Release Date: 02/23/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Carl Michael Ziehrer,  Henri Wieniawski,  Richard Wagner,  Yuzo Toyama  ... 
    Performer:  Vadim Repin
    Conductor:  Mariss Jansons
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Berlin Philharmonic Orchestra
    DVD: $24.99
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  • 43.
    The Sound Of Sibelius / Vanska, Lahti Symphony Orchestra
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 1645 Release Date: 01/26/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius
    Conductor:  Osmo Vänskä
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Lahti Symphony Orchestra
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  • 44.
    Aurora - Music Of The Northern Lights / Jarvi, Gothenburg
    Label: Deutsche Grammophon   Catalog: 471747 Release Date: 12/29/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius,  Edvard Grieg,  Hans Christian Lumbye,  Carl Nielsen  ... 
    Conductor:  Neeme Järvi
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra
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  • 45.
    Berlitz Passport - The Music Of Scandinavia
    Label: Sony Classical Masterworks   Catalog: 47281 Release Date: 10/29/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hugo Alfvén,  Edvard Grieg,  Jean Sibelius,  Carl Nielsen  ... 
    Performer:  Stan Freeman
    Conductor:  Sir Andrew Davis,  Leonard Bernstein,  Eugene Ormandy,  Howard Hanson  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Philharmonia Orchestra,  New York Philharmonic,  Philadelphia Orchestra  ... 
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  • 46.
    Sibelius: Symphonies 1, 2, 3 & 5 / Mariss Jansons, Et Al
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 97180 Release Date: 10/20/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius
    Conductor:  Mariss Jansons
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra
    CD: $12.99
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  • 47.
    100 Best 20th Century Classics
    Label: Warner Classics   Catalog: 64249 Release Date: 07/28/2009   Number of Discs: 6
    Composer:  György Ligeti,  John Adams,  George Gershwin,  Aaron Copland  ... 
    Performer:  Wayne Marshall,  Ralph Kirshbaum,  Tasmin Little,  Simon Haram  ... 
    Conductor:  None,  Simon Rattle,  Leonard Slatkin,  Christopher Warren-Green  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Artemis String Quartet,  City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra,  St. Louis Symphony Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $19.99
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  • 48.
    Bernstein Favorites - Orchestral Dances
    Label: Sony   Catalog: 46707 Release Date: 07/07/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Leonard Bernstein,  Georges Bizet,  Johannes Brahms,  Emmanuel Chabrier  ... 
    Conductor:  Leonard Bernstein
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  New York Philharmonic
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  • 49.
    Esprit - Melancolique
    Label: Naive   Catalog: 5172 Release Date: 05/26/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Samuel Barber,  Gabriel Fauré,  George Frideric Handel,  Tomaso Albinoni  ... 
    Performer:  Laurent Korcia,  Grigory Sokolov,  Anne Gastinel,  Sandrine Piau
    Conductor:  Giovanni Antonini,  Christophe Rousset,  John Eliot Gardiner,  Laurence Equilbey  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Les Talens Lyriques,  Il Giardino Armonico,  English Baroque Soloists  ... 
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  • 50.
    Sibelius: Symphony No 2, Tapiola, Kuolema Suite / Blomstedt
    Label: Decca   Catalog: 433810 Release Date: 05/22/2009   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Jean Sibelius
    Conductor:  Herbert Blomstedt
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  San Francisco Symphony Orchestra
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