MEMETERIA by Thomas May

Music & the Arts

Salonen’s Nyx

Here’s a recent program essay I wrote on Esa-Pekka Salonen’s NyxThe composer himself is conducting the San Francisco Symphony this week in a program that includes The Firebird and Ravel’s Mother Goose.

To music lovers, the mention of Finland seems to conjure the ghost of Sibelius. For the gifted Finnish composers of Esa-Pekka Salonen’s generation in particular, Sibelius is a commanding presence. And yet such “anxiety of influence” can indeed generate creative innovation. Over the past several decades there has emerged an extraordinary generation of creative thinkers staking out new territory, and the once-marginalized Finland has turned into a progenitor of some of today’s most interesting composers.

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Filed under: new music, Salonen


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