The Finnish newspaper Helsingin Sanomat writes of the success the Finnish composer Jean Sibelius gained with his performance at Queens Hall in London. The music of Sibelius had gained respect and enthusiasm in England, and critics had praised the performances. The newspaper summarises the articles Standard, Times and Daily Chronicle had written of the composer’s visit.
Standard had noted, that Sibelius evidently is a strong personality, and this affects his orchestra. With him as conductor, the orchestra performed both pieces extremely well.
Times wrote that the piece “Finlandia” had reached unusual popularity already since Mr Mood conducted it in England a few years before Sibelius’ visit. But now, with the composer present, both pieces were interpreted with extreme accuracy, grace and deep effect, despite the fact that both pieces are very challenging to master for a musician.
Daily Chronicle had published an article with a picture of the composer. Daily Chronicle wrote, that often music gives a more lively interpretation of the injustices a nation has faced, and its melancholy and despair, than written word. Sibelius had some time ago had the honour that Russian officials had banned Sibelius’ composition “Finlandia”, because it conveyed in a too realistic way the national feeling of the oppressed Finland. Even though it is only a musical piece, its vigour is so evident and strong, that it nearly creates a riot on the streets of Helsinki. Daily Chronicle writes that no English composer could create such charm and ecstasy. Some English composers believe that by using national or local folk songs, they could create a picture of the national identity today. But not Sibelius, he is his own interpreter and lets his music speak for itself.