Sibelius Symphony No 4 in a, Op 63

The Symphony No. 4 in A minor, Op. 63, is one of seven completed symphonies composed by Jean Sibelius. Written between 1910 and 1911, it was premiered in Helsinki on 3 April 1911 by the Philharmonia Society, with Sibelius conducting. In the year before beginning the symphony, Sibelius had met many of his contemporaries in central Europe, including Arnold Schoenberg, Igor Stravinsky, and others; his encounter with their music provoked a crisis in his own compositional life. He said in a letter to his friend (and biographer) Rosa Newmarch about the symphony: "It stands as a protest against present-day music. It has absolutely nothing of the circus about it." Later, when asked about the symphony, he quoted August Strindberg: "Det är synd om människorna" (One feels pity for human beings). The work comprises four movements.

VIDEO: Jean Sibelius Symphony No 4 A minor 1911 Salonen Swedish RSO

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