‘Nordic Pulse’ tour will feature concerts in Palanga, Riga, Tallinn, Helsinki and St. Petersburg and features David Nebel and Mick Pedaja as special guests

The Baltic Sea Philharmonic and Kristjan Jarvi will begin their first major tour of 2019 in Palanga, Lithuania, on 11 March. The ‘Nordic Pulse’ tour will take the orchestra on to three European capitals – Riga (12 March), Tallinn (16 March) and Helsinki (17 March) – before concluding in St. Petersburg (19 March). The tour includes debuts for the orchestra at the Palanga Concert Hall, the ultra-modern Mariinsky II in St. Petersburg, and the Alvar Aalto-designed Finlandia Hall in Helsinki. The tour will also underline the Baltic Sea Philharmonic’s commitment to protecting the Baltic Sea environment, with a benefit concert for the John Nurminen Foundation in Finland and a special concert at the environmental forum Baltic Sea Day in St. Petersburg.

‘Nordic Pulse’ – music of light and magic

‘Nordic Pulse’ is inspired by nature, and by the fairytale magic of Tchaikovsky’s The Sleeping Beauty. The programme includes Kristjan Järvi’s Northern Lights-inspired Aurora, Pēteris Vasks’s meditative second violin concerto Vientuļais Eņģelis (Lonely Angel) and Gediminas Gelgotas’s 2018 Violin Concerto. The soloist in both concertos is Swiss violinist David Nebel.

The programme closes with a memorised performance of Järvi’s arrangement of the concert suite from Tchaikovsky’s great ballet The Sleeping Beauty. Playing without sheet music has rapidly become part of the Baltic Sea Philharmonic’s identity after the ensemble made history in 2017 by becoming the first orchestra in the world to perform Stravinsky’s The Firebird from memory. ‘Performing from memory is all about chemistry and communication,’ says Järvi. ‘It intensifies the connection between the players, bringing them closer together.’

The ‘Nordic Pulse’ tour will also feature the Baltic Sea Philharmonic’s debut collaboration with Estonian singer-songwriter Mick Pedaja. A performer whose ambient, flowing, electronic-enriched music is strongly inspired by landscape and nature, Pedaja released his latest album Avaimus in December 2018. He will open each ‘Nordic Pulse’ concert with a special performance alongside the orchestra.

Protecting the Baltic Sea

Ever since it was founded in 2008, the Baltic Sea Philharmonic has been committed to the environment, and especially the Baltic Sea itself. ‘This body of water is the engine of the whole Nordic region and must be cherished and protected,’ says Järvi. The ‘Nordic Pulse’ tour will underline the orchestra’s environmental vision in two significant ways. Firstly, in Helsinki the orchestra will support the work of the John Nurminen Foundation, with one Euro of every concert ticket sold going towards the Foundation’s projects to protect the waters of the Baltic Sea. Secondly, the orchestra will give a special extra concert in St. Petersburg on 21 March, at the grand, Rococo-style Catherine Palace, for delegates to the 20th annual Baltic Sea Day, an international forum that focuses on ways to protect the Baltic Sea marine environment.

Recruiting new musical talent

The Baltic Sea Philharmonic regularly auditions the best and brightest young musicians from across the Baltic Sea region in order to renew and refresh the pool of outstanding players who perform with the orchestra on tour. In March the orchestra will run its Talent Tour 2019 alongside the ‘Nordic Pulse’ tour, giving musicians the opportunity to audition in Palanga (8 March), Riga (13 March), Tallinn (15 March), Helsinki (18 March) and St. Petersburg (19 March). A new two-stage audition process will feature both a solo round and the chance to join a full rehearsal with the entire orchestra. Full details are available here.

For details of the ‘Nordic Pulse’ tour and to book tickets, see our concert calendar here

‘Nordic Pulse’ Tour

Monday, 11 March 2019, 7.00 pm, Palanga (Palanga Concert Hall), Lithuania
Tuesday, 12 March 2019, 7.00 pm, Riga (Great Guild Concert Hall), Latvia
Saturday, 16 March 2019, 7.00 pm, Tallinn (Estonia Concert Hall), Estonia
Sunday, 17 March 2019, 3.00 pm, Helsinki (Finlandia Hall), Finland
Tuesday, 19 March 2019, 7.00 pm, St. Petersburg (Mariinsky II), Russia
Thursday, 21 March 2019, 7.00 pm, St. Petersburg (Baltic Sea Day / Catherine Palace), Russia

Baltic Sea Philharmonic
Kristjan Järvi
David Nebel
Mick Pedaja

Pēteris Vasks
Vientuļais Eņģelis (Lonely Angel), Meditation for violin and string orchestra

Kristjan Järvi

Gediminas Gelgotas
Violin Concerto

Peter I. Tchaikovsky
The Sleeping Beauty concert suite arranged by Kristjan Järvi – from memory

Jean Sibelius
ʻSong of Praise’ from Svanevit, Op. 54 – Finland only