Berlin, 11 December 2020:
Baltic Sea Philharmonic releases new ‘Musical Chain’ video – ‘Nutty Christmas’, based on dances from Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker

  • Fourth release in music video series featuring original transformations and remixes of iconic classical pieces

  • Innovative production combines audio recording by 22 musicians with video featuring 14 musicians, under creative direction of Kristjan Järvi

  • Video series reflects Baltic Sea Philharmonic’s drive to break boundaries and explore new formats

  • Musical Chain’ to continue in 2021 with wide-ranging collaborations between orchestra and guest artists

Berlin 11 December 2020. The Baltic Sea Philharmonic and Kristjan Järvi today release the fourth video in their innovative digital project ‘Musical Chain’. The new video, ‘Nutty Christmas’, continues the orchestra’s striking transformations and remixes of iconic classical pieces. It follows the release of ‘Midnight Mood’, based on Grieg’s ‘Morning Mood’ from Peer Gynt, ‘Beethoven’s Twilight’, inspired by Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5, and ‘Ascending Swans’, based on the ‘Song of Praise’ from Sibelius’s Swanwhite Suite. With ‘Nutty Christmas’ the Baltic Sea Philharmonic and Kristjan Järvi transform the ‘Dance of the Reed Pipes’ and the ‘Dance of the Sugar Plum Fairy’ from Tchaikovsky’s The Nutcracker into a unique musical Christmas cracker.

The audio for the new production was recorded by 22 musicians from the orchestra, and the video features 14 musicians, most of whom filmed themselves outside in wintery landscapes and city streets lit up by Christmas decorations. Reflecting the international make-up of the ensemble, the film takes in performances from Wroclaw, Berlin, Hamburg, St. Petersburg, Moscow, Belgrade, Madrid and the countryside of Finland and Lithuania. Kristjan Järvi remixed the audio and a professional production team edited the video, which captures the Baltic Sea Philharmonic musicians in a fun and festive mood. ‘Nutty Christmas’ is available to watch from today on the orchestra’s social media channels.

Musical Chain’ – a digital evolution

A symbol of unity and solidarity in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic, and inspired by the human chains formed by people across the three Baltic States in August 1989, ‘Musical Chain’ brings together musicians from across Europe in a new kind of virtual orchestra collaboration. Launched in July 2020, ‘Musical Chain’ reflects the orchestra’s boundary-breaking spirit and its dedication to communicating through digital media the energy, style and freedom of its live performances. It also highlights how the Baltic Sea Philharmonic is evolving to become more and more like a band, with Kristjan Järvi as much producer as conductor. Järvi says: ‘The pandemic put us into a situation where we’ve had to come out of our normal groove and comfort zone, our usual structures, methods and routines. Physically we can’t produce the same energy in the same room, but we’re creating a new way to convey our energy and spirit to people around the world who are inspired by what we do and the way we make music.’

Musical gems recut for the 21st century
The ‘Musical Chain’ project launched in July with the ‘Rewritten Series’ of music remix videos. The series opened with the Grieg-inspired ‘Midnight Mood’, which featured 13 musicians under the creative direction of Kristjan Järvi. Since its release on 23 July, ‘Midnight Mood’ has had 56,800 views on Facebook and 20,000 views on YouTube. ‘Midnight Mood’ was also performed live with a full orchestra on the Baltic Sea Philharmonic’s ‘Nordic Pulse’ tour of Italy and Germany in September. In addition, the video of ‘Midnight Mood’ accompanied the orchestra’s performances on the opening day of the 27th Usedom Music Festival on 19 September.

The second video in the series, ‘Beethoven’s Twilight’, was released on 24 September. This cutting-edge, electronics-infused take on Beethoven’s Symphony No. 5 features 21 musicians from the orchestra and has been watched 27,000 times on Facebook and 14,000 times on YouTube. Beethoven’s Fifth Symphony was also part of the Baltic Sea Philharmonic’s recent concert programmes, in celebration of this year’s 250th anniversary of the composer’s birth.

The third ‘Musical Chain’ video, ‘Ascending Swans’, is based on the ‘Song of Praise’ from Sibelius’s Swanwhite Suite, one of the Baltic Sea Philharmonic’s favourite encore pieces. The orchestra recorded the music for ‘Ascending Swans’ in Merano, Italy, in September 2020, during its ‘Nordic Pulse’ tour of Italy and Germany. Kristjan Järvi remixed the audio and, as before, a professional production team edited the video. The film features 13 Baltic Sea Philharmonic musicians, who recorded themselves outdoors in atmospheric landscapes, along with stunning images that celebrate the nature and landscapes of the North. Since its release on 20 November, ‘Ascending Swans’ has had 47,000 views on Facebook and over 30,000 views on YouTube.

Musical Chain’ will continue in 2021 with more wide-ranging collaborations involving not only the musicians of the Baltic Sea Philharmonic but also guest artists and soloists with whom the orchestra will be performing live in 2021.

Baltic Sea Philharmonic – a revolution in music and culture

The Baltic Sea Philharmonic takes the orchestral concert experience to a new dimension. Every performance is a voyage of musical discovery, as the musicians perform the entire programme from memory, creating a one-of-a-kind artistic journey. Each concert is a unique spectacle of sound, light, visual art, technology, choreography and playing by heart, and under the electrifying baton of Music Director and Founding Conductor Kristjan Järvi every performance has a special energy that is absolutely infectious. But even more than this, as a community of musicians from ten Nordic countries, the Baltic Sea Philharmonic transcends boundaries and has become a movement for bringing people together. Embodying all that is innovative and progressive about the Nordic region, this visionary ensemble is taking the traditional orchestral model further than ever before. ‘It is a living breathing creature, with boundless energy and enthusiasm for the new – an adventure in itself,’ says Kristjan Järvi.