A fascinating hybrid of European modernist rigor and polyglot Californian cool, wrote the Boston Globe. Esa-Pekka Salonens four-movement Violin Concerto (2009) is perhaps the first great 21st century addition to the concerto genre. Written for the American violinist Leila Josefowicz, this highly attractive concerto appears headed straight into the standard repertoire (Classical Review), and has already been performed in major musical centres including London, Berlin, Boston, San Francisco, and Los Angeles.
The concerto was written as Maestro Salonen neared the end of his 17-year tenure as Music Director of the Los Angeles Philharmonic. As he writes: During the composing process of Violin Concerto I felt that I was somehow trying to sum up everything I had learned and experienced up to that point in my life as a musician.
The concerto is coupled with Nyx (2011), a single-movement pulsing piece for full orchestra that paints a musical portrait of the shadowy Greek goddess. The New York Times called the work sweeping . . . and alluring.
Esa-Pekka Salonen and Julia Fischer will perform the concerto next year with the Vienna Philharmonic while Leila Josefowicz will play the piece with the New York Philharmonic during the 2013/14 season. Nyx is being toured with the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks and was heard this past season at Carnegie Hall.