Words matter. These are the best Esa-Pekka Salonen Quotes, and they’re great for sharing with your friends.
The underlying process in Northern music tends to be slower and continuous, whatever’s happening on the surface; in Southern music the underlying process is always faster.
Every day we make more progress toward understanding the concert hall.
As we watch TV or films, there are no organic transitions, only edits. The idea of A becoming B, rather than A jumping to B, has become foreign.
When we’re at the end of The Rite of Spring or of a Bruckner symphony, I want people to feel the music physically.
I discovered that the people of the North are different and there’s no way you can make a person from the North similar to a Southerner. They’re two different worlds.
Once you get over the first hill, there is always a new, higher one lurking, of course.
The act of conducting in itself, of waving my arms in the air and being in charge, I didn’t miss. I missed the sensual pleasure of being in contact with music.
Music has just as much to do with movement and body as it does soul and intellect.
I love a visceral sound, the kind that hits you in the belly.
This continuity of sound and form was something that I became really interested in from working with Ligeti. He was always going on about how form has to be continuous.
The Northern idea of form is more of a process. The various units of the form overlap. You can’t tell where some things stop and new things start. This is typical of Sibelius.
After working with Ligeti I began to hear Brahms and Beethoven differently.
Los Angeles is just a more open place. The way L.A. functions is that people give you a forum. They say, Show us what you can do.
There is more openness in LA to possibilities than on the East Coast of America. There is a pioneering spirit there that stems from the reason people went out there in the first place-to find something new.
This country, and the West Coast, especially, is bad at preserving any cultural legacy.
The sound was my greatest concern. There were certain difficulties getting used to the way every musician can hear his or herself, the way each of them relates to the musician in the next seat.
I don’t believe in an annual dose of film music for the sake of it being film music. If we program film music, it will be because there is a real artistic reason for doing so.
With American orchestras, in particular, because they play in such huge halls, getting a true pianissimo is very hard.
I feel very free and very happy to be a composer.
The Royal Festival Hall in London is nice; people hang out there. I think this inviting, non-exclusive character is very important.
If the seams are showing, there is something wrong with the performance or the construction of the piece. This idea is completely at odds with our modern visual experience, because everything today is based on montage.
In the range of music that we play – roughly 300 years’ worth-there really are more similarities than differences.
There is such a suspicion in today’s world of people who do more than one thing, who aren’t specialized.
The music I turn out these days is the kind of music I want to hear myself.
In Europe, there is so much tradition, and everyone has established ideas as to what art should be and what it has always been.
Stravinsky is masterly: his harmony is conceived so precisely that it can only be the way it is.
The players never think they project enough. In a hall that seats 3,300 people, it’s a very scary thing to play so quietly that you can barely hear yourself.
I always had, deep down, a slight aversion toward the purely cerebral in music.
I can’t imagine how many first performances I’ve done, perhaps 500. Some of them have been very good, and some of course very bad.
Orchestras have become used to the emphasis on the separation of layers, of the ultimate precision and clarity.
Anyone who composes and conducts at the same time is immediately suspect, because he must be faking one or the other.
This conducting thing happened. In 1983 I was sucked into this international career, which was a very scary experience.
I’m still disturbed if a chord isn’t together, but your priorities change as you get older.