Conductor Pietari Inkinen
The birds, suite for small orchestra P.154
Preludio: Allegro moderato (Bernardo Pasquini) – The dove: Andante espressivo (Jacques de Gallot) – The hen: Allegro vivace (Jean-Philippe Rameau) – The nightingale: Andante mosso (English anonymouse) – The cuckoo: Allegro (Bernardo Pasquini)
Fountains of Rome, symphonic poem P.106
The Fountain of Valle Giulia at Dawn (Andante mosso) – The Triton Fountain in the Morning (Vivo-un poco meno allegretto-più vivo, gaiamente) – The Trevi Fountain at Noon (Allegro moderato-allegro vivace-più vivace-largamente-calmo) – The Villa Medici Fountain at Sunset (Andante-meno mosso-andante come prima)
Sadko: Tableau musical, op.5
The Firebird, suite n.2
Introduction – The Firebird and its Dance – Variations of the Firebird – Khorovod (Round Dance) of the Princesses- Infernal Dance of King Kaschej – Berceuse and Finale
Sadko (1867) by Nicolai Rimsky-Korsakov (1844-1908) is the first Russian symphonic poem, along with Modest Musorgsky’s Night on Bald Mountain. The subject was suggested to the composer by the critic Vladimir Stassov: it tells of the legendary seaman bard who, dragged by the king of the sea into the abyss, unleashes with his music a submarine bacchanal. Almost thirty years later, Rimsky used the material of the symphonic poem to write an opera on the same subject, after having re-orchestrated it in 1892. Ottorino Respighi (1879-1936) perfected himself at Rimskij-Korsakov’s school when he was the first viola at Imperial Theatre of St. Petersburg. Respighi became one of the most admirable orchestrators of his time whether he transcribed pre-existing music as in the suite Gli Uccelli (The Birds) (1928), music from the 16th and 17th centuries for harpsichord or lute in which the singing of birds was stylized, freely translated with all the contributions of modern orchestra; or also when he conceived an original symphonic poem, like the most famous of the so-called Roman trilogy, I Pini di Roma (Roman pines) (1924), which are only a graceful label and stand for Villa Borghese, a catacomb, the Janiculum, the Appian Way, and in turn they are children who dance and pretend to be soldiers, the catacombs are suspended psalmodies, the Janiculum is a full moon, and the Appian Way are ghosts of Roman legions marching towards the Capitol. Also Igor ‘Stravinski (1882-1971) always had high regard and gratitude for his teacher Rimsky-Korsakov, as demonstrated by the closeness between the ballet that made him an international celebrity, L’Oiseau de feu (1910), first great commission of the Ballets Russes by Djagilev and the fairy tale opera The Golden Cockerel, a posthumous masterpiece of the elderly Russian composer.
In September 2017 Pietari Inkinen became Chief Conductor of the Deutsche Radio Philharmonie Saarbruecken. Inkinen is also Chief Conductor of the Japan Philharmonic Orchestra, a post he has held since the beginning of the 16-17 season, and Chief Conductor of the Prague Symphony Orchestra and the Ludwigsburg Schlossfestspiele, posts he took up in 2015.
Recent and future highlights include debuts with the Pittsburgh Symphony, Concertgebouw Orchestra, Gurzenich Orchestra, NDR Hamburg, SWR Stuttgart and Budapest Festival Orchestra. 2017/2018 also featured the continuation of a complete Ring Cycle in concert with the Japan Philharmonic, as well as returns to the BBC Philharmonic and Finnish Radio Symphony orchestras. He also conducted the Finnish National Opera in their Independence Day 100th Anniversary Gala followed by a production of Madame Butterfly. The Finnish celebrations were also marked with performances of several recently-composed Finnish works including the world premieres of Rautavaara´s final completed symphonic work “In the Beginning” and a new work by Olli Vertaperko.
In previous seasons Inkinen has also conducted RSB Berlin, Staatskapelle Berlin, Munich Philharmonic, La Scala Philharmonic, Orchestra of Santa Cecilia, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Los Angeles Philharmonic, Rotterdam Philharmonic, Israel Philharmonic, Bavarian Radio Symphony, Vienna Radio Symphony, BBC Symphony, City of Birmingham Symphony, Spanish National Orchestra, Helsinki Philharmonic, Swedish Radio Symphony, Orchestra Verdi Milan and Oslo Philharmonic as well as the Staatskapelle Dresden and the Leipzig Gewandhaus.
In autumn 2018 Inkinen returns to Melbourne to conduct Die Meistersinger, following his acclaimed performances in 2016 of Wagner´s Der Ring des Nibelungen, directed by Neil Armfield. This is the production which in August 2014 inspired Australia´s Helpmann Awards, recognising artistic excellence throughout Australia´s vibrant performing arts scene, to vote Inkinen as the award winner for Best Music Direction for Opera Australia´s Ring Cycle. The 2016 revival garnered Inkinen a further Green Room award for Best Conductor (Opera).
Other opera engagements have included the Finnish National Opera, La Monnaie in Brussels, Staatsoper in Berlin and the Bayerische Staatsoper in Munich. He has conducted Wagner´s Walkure and Das Rheingold in Palermo’s Teatro Massimo for which he was awarded Italy´s National Association of Music Critics´ Franco Abbiati Prize for “Best Show” for Das Rheingold. He also conducted performances of a highly successful new production of Eugene Onegin at the Dresden Semperoper.
From 2008 to 2016 Pietari was Music Director of the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra where he now holds the title of Honorary Conductor. During his tenure, the orchestra rose to new levels with a highly acclaimed European tour, as well as the recording of a complete cycle of Sibelius Symphonies for Naxos. This, and other recordings for Naxos, including the premiere recording of Rautavaara´s Manhattan Trilogy and a further live Sibelius Cycle recorded with the Japan Philharmonic Orchestra in Suntory Hall, have been widely acclaimed. Inkinen has a large number of other recording credits, including Wagner arias and orchestral pieces with Simon O´Neill and the New Zealand Symphony Orchestra for EMI, which earned a rare double five-star review from BBC Music Magazine, and the Shostakovich Cello Concerto and Britten Cello Symphony with Johannes Moser for Haenssler.
Also an accomplished violin soloist, Inkinen studied at the Cologne Music Academy with Zakhar Bron, winning various awards and prizes for his solo work, before taking further studies in conducting at the Sibelius Academy in Helsinki. He continues to enjoy play-directing and performing chamber music with his regular musical partners.