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Järvi is not didactic about orchestral size in 18th and early 19th century scores. 'We are at a healthy place in terms of symphony orchestras playing chamber orchestral repertoire', he says. 'I want to bring Bach back to the major concert stage.' He is looking forward to performing Bach's B Minor Mass in Cincinnati with large orchestral and choral forces. Järvi notes that 'Mahler, Furtwängler, and Mengelberg performed Bach's music with a large orchestra and chorus. Mengelberg's Bach was deeply profound.'

Now firmly ensconced in Cincinnati, Järvi is proud of his accomplishments with that orchestra. 'We have performed 50 pieces (over four seasons) that were new to the orchestra's repertoire. It is important to keep the art alive, to present works in context, and to include challenging repertoire. The Cincinnati Symphony is the fifth oldest orchestra in North America. Our support is tremendously strong. The orchestra really matters to the community.'

Järvi has undertaken a series of acclaimed recordings with the stellar Cincinnati ensemble. A recent disc coupled Stravinsky's Rite of Spring with Nielsen's 5th Symphony. (There is always logic in Järvi's combinations of scores on his recordings.) 'The Stravinsky and Nielsen are similar in concept -- two views of barbarism about ten years apart. The Nielsen symphony is almost threatening', Järvi elucidated. His next recorded project in Cincinnati is the Concerti for Orchestra of Bartók and Lutoslawski. 'The Lutoslawski work is not absolutely standard repertoire.' Recent recordings have paired symphonies of Dvorák and Sibelius with works by Bohuslav Martinu and Eduard Tubin. The latter Estonian composer is particularly dear to Järvi's heart. 'One of the paradoxes of the musical world is that there is such a rich library of works; yet the repertoire remains limited to what is considered standard. Tubin is an unjustly neglected composer with a distinctive musical voice. My father recorded a complete set of Tubin's symphonies', he observes.

Paavo Järvi
Paavo Järvi

Following summer appearances at the Verbier Festival, fall finds Järvi touring South Germany with the great Dresden Staatskapelle (which recently gave memorable performances of Beethoven and Brahms symphonies in South Florida under the baton of Myung Whun Chung). He will conduct a complete Beethoven symphony cycle with the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie. 'We are a touring orchestra similar to the Chamber Orchestra of Europe', he observes. 'The Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie plays everything from small Stravinsky to Brahms.' Performances in the Far East and Asia also loom on Järvi's calendar. Clearly he upholds the family tradition of superb music making with ensembles that span the globe!

Copyright © 11 July 2005 Lawrence Budmen, Miami Beach, USA








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