Born in 1949, Kalevi Aho is one of the most internationally respected modern Finnish composers, and a student of Einojuhani Rautavaara in Helsinki, then of Boris Blacher in Berlin. In addition to 15 symphonies and 19 concertos, he has written four operas, various choral works and chamber music. Most CD recordings of his works have been conducted by Osmo Vänskä. Born in 1953, the Finnish conductor and composer began his career at the podium with victory in the 1982 conductors’ competition in Besa...nçon. He has led several orchestras in his home country, while his international career has been associated mainly with ensembles in Northern Europe, the UK and the United States. Béla Bartók’s Piano Concerto No. 1 breaks with the Romantic concerto tradition of setting a solo instrument off against an orchestra, instead following a model of instrumentation built on blocks of instruments and musical timbres grouped in unison. Its other characteristic feature is monothematic construction, as the entire work develops from a single basic theme. Prokofiev wrote his ballet based on Shakespeare’s tragedy at the request of the Bolshoi Theatre; however, the theatre rejected the work as unsuitable for performance. The composer subsequently rearranged the ballet music into two concert suites. The suites found success in 1936 and 1937, while the original version for the ballet stage was eventually premièred in Czechoslovakia. For this concert of the Budapest Festival Orchestra, Osmo Vänskä has compiled a suite from the musical material of the ballet. The concert of 12 May is made possible with the support of Napi Gazdaság Kiadói Kft. Presented by: Budapest Festival Orchestra
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