From Bach’s baroque universe to Stravinsky’s cosmos. Principal Guest Conductor Klaus Mäkelä leads the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, world-renowned baritone Peter Mattei, and legendary cellist Miklós Perényi in a magnificent concert with music that spans centuries. In addition, the Swedish Radio Choir performs Bach’s marvellously beautiful Nach dir, Herr, verlanget mich.

There is a struggle between good and evil in Russian folk tale The Firebird. With the magical bird by his side, Prince Ivan manages to rescue twelve princesses from an evil wizard, helped by dance and song. The firebird is the Russian equivalent of the Phoenix of Greek mythology, and similarly symbolises rebirth and hope, something that we need now more than ever.

When Igor Stravinsky, aged only 27, was asked by Sergei Diaghilev, who ran the Ballets Russes in Paris, to compose the ballet music for The Firebird, many prominent Russian composers had either declined the offer, or tried and failed. In spite of his lack of experience, Stravinsky bravely took on the task. He composed a complex and driven piece that saw great success at the premiere, choreographed by Michel Fokine, in May, 1910. Over the following years, Stravinsky and Diaghilev collaborated intensely, and the result, three years later, was modernist dance drama The Rite of Spring.

The equally dreamy and dramatic tone of The Firebird can also be found in one of the world’s most played cello pieces, Tout un monde lointain by Henri Dutilleux. The sublime tone of the cello against an enigmatic orchestral sound takes us to a world far away, one that exists beyond reality, perhaps the world we yearn for. The five movements for cello and orchestra are inspired by texts from Charles Baudelaire’s poetry in Les Fleurs du mal. 

Dutilleux worked on Tout un monde between 1967 and 1970, and created the cello part with Russian cellist Mstislav Rostropovich, to whom he also dedicated the piece. In the Swedish Radio concert hall Berwaldhallen, Hungarian world-class cellist Miklós Perényi is the soloist.

Johann Sebastian Bach’s cantata 150 also expresses yearning for something higher. Using hymn Nach dir, Herrn, verlanget mich (I yearn for you, my Lord), which is about suffering on Earth, and the hope of salvation through God, as a starting point, Bach composed a cantata of seven movements for a four-part choir and baroque ensemble. It’s likely that the 15-minute piece saw the light of day when Bach was working in Arnstadt in 1707, and much points to it being the very first church cantata he ever composed. Solo cantata Ich habe genug was written twenty years later, for Candlemas, 1727. The piece, comprising five movements, was written for bass voice, oboe, two violins, viola, and basso continuo. The lamenting upward movements of the oboe are interwoven with those of the bass soloist in this melancholic piece, which Bach himself was so fond of that he created several versions of it. In one arrangement for a soprano soloist, which he completed in 1731, the oboe has been replaced by a flute part.

The soloist at the Swedish Radio concert hall Berwaldhallen is Peter Mattei, who, apart from having toured around the world with the big opera parts, also feels at home with Bach. For instance, he gave a celebrated performance of the Matthew Passion at the Baltic Sea Festival in 2019.

Anna Hedelius



dot 2021/2022





The Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra is a multiple-award-winning ensemble renowned for its high artistic standard and stylistic breadth, as well as collaborations with the world’s finest composers, conductors, and soloists. It regularly tours all over Europe and the world and has an extensive and acclaimed recording catalogue.

Daniel Harding has been Music Director of the SRSO since 2007, and since 2019 also its Artistic Director. His tenure will last throughout the 2024/2025 season. Two of the orchestra’s former chief conductors, Herbert Blomstedt and Esa-Pekka Salonen, have since been named Conductors Laureate, and continue to perform regularly with the orchestra.

The Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra performs at Berwaldhallen, concert hall of the Swedish Radio, and is a cornerstone of Swedish public service broadcasting. Its concerts are heard weekly on the Swedish classical radio P2 and regularly on national public television SVT. Several concerts are also streamed on-demand on Berwaldhallen Play and broadcast globally through the EBU.


32 professional choristers make up the Swedish Radio Choir: a unique, dynamic instrument hailed by music-lovers and critics all over the world. The Swedish Radio Choir performs at Berwaldhallen, concert hall of the Swedish Radio, as well as on tours all over the country and the world. Also, they are heard regularly by millions of listeners on Swedish Radio P2, Berwaldhallen Play and globally through the EBU.

The award-winning Latvian conductor Kaspars Putniņš was appointed Chief Conductor of the Swedish Radio Choir in 2020. Since January 2019, its choirmaster is French orchestral and choral conductor Marc Korovitch, with responsibility for the choir’s vocal development.

The Swedish Radio Choir was founded in 1925, the same year as Sweden’s inaugural radio broadcasts, and gave its first concert in May that year. Multiple acclaimed and award-winning albums can be found in the choir’s record catalogue. Late 2023 saw the release of Kaspars Putniņš first album with the choir: Robert Schumann’s Missa sacra, recorded with organist Johan Hammarström.


Klaus Mäkelä is Chief Conductor and Artistic Advisor of the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra. With Orchestre de Paris he assumed the role of Music Director in September 2021 and has been the orchestra’s Artistic Advisor since the start of the 2020/21 season. He is also Principal Guest Conductor of the Swedish Radio Symphony and Artistic Director of the Turku Music Festival. An exclusive Decca Classics Artist, Klaus Mäkelä has recorded the complete Sibelius Symphony cycle with the Oslo Philharmonic as his first project for the label, to be released in 2022.

Klaus Mäkelä launched the Oslo Philharmonic 2021/22 season in August with a special concert featuring Saariaho’s Asteroid 4179: Toutatis, Strauss Also sprach Zarathustra, two new works by Norwegian composer Mette Henriette and Sibelius Lemminkäinen. A similarly wide range of repertoire is presented throughout his second season in Oslo, including major choral works by Bach, Mozart and William Walton, Mahler Symphony No. 3 and Shostakovich Symphonies Nos. 10 and 14 with soloists Mika Kares and Asmik Grigorian. Recent and new works include compositions by Sally Beamish, Unsuk Chin, Jimmy Lopez, Andrew Norman and Kaija Saariaho. In Spring 2022 Klaus Mäkelä and the Oslo Philharmonic will perform the complete Sibelius Symphony cycle at the Wiener Konzerthaus and Hamburg Elbphilharmonie and give additional concerts at the Paris Philharmonie and London Barbican.

With Orchestre de Paris, Klaus Mäkelä performed at the summer festivals of Granada and Aix en Provence. For his first concert in the 2021/ 22 season he conducted a new work by Unsuk Chin entitled Spira, Richard Strauss Four Songs Op 27 with soloist Lise Davidsen and Mahler Symphony No. 1. His first season as Music Director also features the music of Ligeti and Dutilleux alongside Biber, Mozart, Mendelssohn, Brahms, Rachmaninov and Stravinsky.

In the 2021/22 season Klaus Mäkelä appears as a Portrait Artist at the Wiener Konzerthaus conducting the Wiener Symphoniker and Oslo Philharmonic and playing cello in chamber music. He also guest conducts the Chicago Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, San Francisco Symphony, Concertgebouworkest, London Philharmonic, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks and Münchner Philharmoniker. In summer 2022 he returns to the Verbier Festival to conduct the Verbier Festival and Verbier Festival Chamber orchestras as well as perform as a chamber musician. He also makes his first appearance at the Jurmala Festival in Riga with the Mariss Jansons Festival Orchestra.

In the 2020/21 season Klaus Mäkelä appeared with the Concertgebouworkest, Münchner Philharmoniker, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, NDR Elbphilharmonie, Orchestra del Maggio Musicale, Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra, Frankfurt Radio Symphony Orchestra, Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra and Tapiola Sinfonietta. As Artist in Residence at Spain’s Granada Festival he conducted the Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Orquesta Ciudad de Granada and Orchestre de Paris. At the Verbier Festival he conducted and performed cello in a chamber music programme.

Mäkelä studied conducting at the Sibelius Academy with Jorma Panula and cello with Marko Ylönen, Timo Hanhinen and Hannu Kiiski. As a soloist, he has performed with several Finnish orchestras and as a chamber musician with members of the Oslo Philharmonic, Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks and Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France.

Miklós Perényi is recognized as one of the great cellists of his generation, with a distinctive, subtly nuanced sound matched by extraordinary musicality. Born in Hungary, he began cello lessons at the age of five with Miklós Zsámboki, a student of David Popper. At the age of nine, he gave his first concert in Budapest, and between 1960 and 1964, he studied with Enrico Mainardi in Rome, and with Ede Banda in Budapest.

In 1974, Miklós Perényi joined the faculty at the Franz Liszt Academy in Budapest, where he still holds a professorship. Perényi has appeared in the world’s major musical centers, performing with the best orchestras around Europe, Asia and North and South America – such as on a tour with the Berlin Philharmonic under Sir Simon Rattle in 2013. His festival engagements have included Edinburgh, Lucerne, Prague, Salzburg, Vienna, Hohenems, Warsaw, Berlin, Kronberg, and the Pablo Casals Festival in Prades, France. 

His repertoire ranges from the 17th century to the present. One of his closest chamber music partners is pianist András Schiff. Beyond performing and teaching, he also devotes his energy to composition of works for solo cello and for instrumental ensembles of various sizes. Miklós Perényi’s numerous recordings include releases for Hungaroton, EMI-Quint, Sony Classical, Decca, col legno, Teldec, Erato and Wigmore Hall’s own label. Perényi’s ECM release of Beethoven’s complete works for cello and piano, with András Schiff, won the Cannes Classical Award in 2005; his latest solo recording with ECM, of works by Britten, Bach and Ligeti, was released in early 2012 to critical acclaim. Exactly forty years after his first complete recording of the six Bach Suites, Miklós Perényi recorded them again for the Hungaroton label, published in October, 2020.

Don Giovanni

Den svenske barytonen Peter Mattei fick sitt internationella genombrott i Peter Brooks produktion i Aix-en-Provence 1998 och har sedan dess haft glädjen och förmånen att få arbeta med flera av världens främsta dirigenter och regissörer på scener runtom Europa och U.S.A. Med sin signaturroll, Don Giovanni, har Mattei gjort bejublande framträdanden på scener som Metropolitan Opera, Wiener Staatsoper, Kungliga Operan, Den Norske Opera, Scottish Opera, Opéra National de Paris, Staatsoper Berlin, Teatro alla Scala, Bayerische Staatsoper och Opernhaus Zürich. Mattei har även varit en återkommande gäst på Metropolitan Opera, där han synts i roller som Amfortas i Parsifal, Wolfram i Tannhäuser, titelrollerna i Eugen Onegin och Wozzeck, Figaro i Barberaren i Sevilla, Greven i Figaros bröllop, Marcello i La Bohème, Yeletsky i Pique Dame och Shishkov i From the House of the Dead.

Mattei är en eftersökt gäst på världens konsertscener och har framträtt med Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Gewandhausorchester, Concertgebouw Orchestra, Berliner Philharmoniker, London Symphony Orchestra, Boston Symphony Orchestra, Chicago Symphony Orchestra och de ledande orkestrarna i Sverige och Norden, i verk som Brahms Ein deutsches Requiem, Sibelius Kullervo, Mahlers Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen och Des Knaben Wunderhorn, Bachs Matteuspassionen och Johannespassionen, samt Zemlinskys Lyrische Sinfonie. Han har sjungit under ledning av dirigenter såsom Sir Georg Solti, Claudio Abbado, Riccardo Muti, Daniel Barenboim, Sir Colin Davis, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Herbert Blomstedt, Daniel Harding, Jeffrey Tate, Riccardo Chailly, Antonio Pappano, Sir Andrew Davis, John Eliot Gardiner och Gustavo Dudamel.

Peter Mattei fick sin utbildning vid Kungliga Musikhögskolan i Stockholm och Operahögskolan i Stockholm och debuterade 1990 på Drottningholms Slottsteater som Nardo i La Finta Giardiniera. År 2004 utnämndes Peter Mattei till Hovsångare och han har belönats med H.M. Konungens medalj Litteris et Artibus för sina framstående konstnärliga insatser som operasångare. Han utsågs 2020 till Musical America Awards ”Vocalist of the year”.

Den franske oboisten Emmanuel Laville är stämledare i Sveriges Radios Symfoniorkester sedan hösten 2011. Dessförinnan var han stämledare i Royal Scottish National Orchestra åren 2008–2011. Han gör återkommande gästspel i orkestrar runt om i Europa såsom Chamber Orchestra of Europe, Mahler Chamber Orchestra, Concertgebouworkestern i Amsterdam, Bayerska radions symfoniorkester och Londons symfoniorkester.

Laville är dessutom aktiv som kammarmusiker, bland annat i Trio Nastela tillsammans med fagottisten Sebastian Stevensson och pianisten Asuka Nakamura. Han har även uruppfört verk för oboe och stråktrio av Madeleine Isaksson, Maria Lithell Flyg och Sven-David Sandström.

Emmanuel Laville är oboelektor vid Konstuniversitetets Sibelius-Akademi i Helsingfors och undervisar även vid Kungl. Musikhögskolan och Lilla Akademien i Stockholm. Han har själv studerat i Frankrike och Tyskland och erhöll 2011 första pris i den prestigefyllda internationella Gillet-Fox-tävlingen.


Malin Broman is the first concertmaster of the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra since 2008. She served as artistic director of Musica Vitae in 2015–2020, premiering over 20 works and touring and recording extensively. In 2019, she succeeded Sakari Oramo as artistic director of the Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra.

As a guest leader, she has been invited to perform with ensembles such as the London Symphony Orchestra, Mahler Chamber Orchestra and the Philharmonia Orchestra. As combined soloist and leader she has performed with the Tapiola Sinfonietta, Nordic Chamber Orchestra, Trondheim Soloists and ACO Collective. Soloist highlights include performances with the Gothenburg Symphony, Copenhagen Phil, BBC Scottish Symphony, Academy of St Martin-in-the Fields, and the Swedish Radio Orchestra, working with such conductors as Neeme Järvi, Andrew Manze and Daniel Harding.

In recent years, she has premiered concertos by Daniel Börtz, Britta Byström, Andrea Tarrodi and Daniel Nelson. She has recorded over 30 albums, including concertos by Carl Nielsen and Britta Byström. Recent releases include an album with music by Laura Netzel, and Stockholm Diary with the Ostrobothnian Chamber Orchestra. Her recording of Mendelssohn’s double concerto together with pianist Simon Crawford-Phillips and Musica Vitae was Grammy nominated in 2019.

She received much acclaim for her recording of Felix Mendelssohn’s string octet in the spring of 2020, where she played all eight parts herself. She has since made two similar recordings: Britta Byström’s octet A Room of One’s Own, and Johan Halvorsens Passacaglia recorded with the Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra’s solo contrabassist Rick Stotijn.

In 2001, she founded the Change Music Festival in Kungsbacka. She is also co-founder of Kungsbacka Piano Trio, with which she had played more than 700 concerts all ove the world, and of Stockholm Syndrome Ensemble which is made up of some of Europe’s most brilliant chamber musicians.

In 2008, Malin was elected a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music. The Kungsbacka Piano Trio has received the prestigious Interpret Prize of the Royal Academy of Music. In 2019, she was awarded H.M. The King’s Medal. She is currently Professor of Viola at Edsberg Institute of Music in Stockholm. She plays a 1709 Stradivarius violin and a 1861 Bajoni viola, both generously loaned by the Järnåker Foundation.


Approximate timings

Much is shrouded in darkness when it comes to the conception of Johann Sebastian Bach’s Cantata No. 150, but today, it is generally said that it may be the very earliest of his surviving cantatas. He probably composed it during his time in Arnstadt, which he left in July of 1707 to move to Mühlhausen. Since the motif of the seventh and final movement can be traced back to a chaconne by Johann Pachelbel, the cantata could be intended as a celebration of this composer, who died in 1706.

The text of Nach dir is, in part, from Psalm 25, and concerns, like the psalm does, the world’s suffering and God’s salvation as something to yearn for. The remainder of the text is rhyming poetry in various metres. The theme, here too, is that humanity faces many difficulties, but that salvation comes from trust in God.

The cantata is the fruit of the creative joy of an innovative and imaginative composer. Despite its length of only 14 minutes, the expression of the piece, written for a four-part harmony choir and baroque ensemble, changes a number of times. Following a melancholy, instrumental opening, yearning for salvation is illustrated with long, chromatic lines in the vocal harmonies. Shortly thereafter, an almost laughing weaving of harmonies begins, accompanying the text’s promise of the enemy’s absent triumphs.

In terzetto Zedern müssen von den Winden, the basso continuo represents the rustling cedars while the singers stand, immovable in the wind. The cantata ends with a magnificent finale in the shape of a chaconne. Its baseline inspired the finale of Johannes Brahms’ fourth symphony.

Anna Hedelius

The brush moving like a breeze across the snare drum, the deep sound of the cello in a string of notes, and then the soft ring of the cymbal. Tout un monde lointain (A Whole Distant World) is suggestive and congruent with its title. Instrument after instrument joins the sound, in dialogue with the cello, and the listener is taken out into a cosmos full of life and mysticism, as the drama increases. The largely introspective and meditative piece, comprising five movements, also includes solitary violent outbursts, not least in the finale, where the music suddenly lands in a cello tremolo to then completely cease, following repeated climaxes.

Henri Dutilleux worked on the cello concerto from 1967 to 1970, in close collaboration with Russian cellist Mstislav Rostropovich, who performed the premiere of the piece with the Orchestre de Paris in Aix-en-Provence on the 25th of July, 1970, led by Serge Baudo.

The title of the piece is borrowed from French symbolist Charles Baudelaire’s at the time very controversial poetry collection The Flowers of Evil (Les Fleurs du mal). In each of the cello concerto’s five movements, Dutilleux has used a text fragment from the collection as the starting point. Though he took great care to ensure that the movements wouldn’t be seen as programmed illustrations to the poems, he tended to choose words whose images could have musical equivalents, such as in the fourth movement, Miroirs, where the violins mirror the theme of the cello, accompanied by the harp.

Tout un monde includes passages that are reminiscent of Stravinsky’s complex rhythms in The Rite of Spring, and the music frequently brings to mind Debussy’s mosaic-like sounds. But on the whole, the cello concerto is, of course, a work in its own right. Its sensitive orchestration and equally beautiful and virtuosic solo part have made it one of the most played pieces on the cello repertoire.

Anna Hedelius

Presenting a child and sacrificing a lamb or two doves in the temple, 40 days after the child’s birth, was a Jewish tradition that coincided with the mother’s purification. This is also something Mary did 40 days after Jesus was born. In the temple, she met the old man Simeon, who immediately recognised baby Jesus as the Messiah, and burst out in a song of praise: ‘Lord, now let your servant depart in peace, according to your word, for my eyes have seen your salvation’.

The Feast of Purification is celebrated in memory of this event. Monasteries use Simeon’s song, Nunc Dimittis, at evening Mass too, intending the promise of the light of the world to give peace ahead of bedtime. Johann Sebastian Bach composed solo cantata Ich habe genug for the Feast of Purification on the 2nd of February 1727, when he was working in the St Thomas Church in Leipzig. It is written for a bass soloist, oboe, two violins, viola and basso continuo, and is made up of three arias and two recitatives.

In the 18th century, death was seen as a liberation from the suffering of earthly life, and a chance to reunite with the creator. Congruently, Bach’s music exudes a softened melancholy. The text of the first aria echoes the spirit of Simeon’s words in Nunc Dimittis: ‘I have enough, I have taken the saviour into my yearning arms’, and interprets the old man’s emotions with a rising sixth in the oboe, an interval that is then repeated in the bass part.

The Schlummert ein, ihr matten Augen aria is, as a lullaby, a call to gently fall asleep forever, to be gone from life’s struggles. In the final movement, the approaching end is celebrated with a happy dance rhythm, Ich freue mich.

Bach himself must have liked the cantata a lot, as he later arranged it for soprano soloist and flute.

Anna Hedelius

At the beginning of the 1900s, Sergei Diaghilev worked variedly to promote and encourage new and radical Russian culture. This work included establishing the Ballets Russes in Paris, for which the young and still unknown Igor Stravinsky had orchestrated music by Chopin. It wasn’t long before he was commissioned to write new music for a Russian folk tale, which was to become Stravinsky’s big breakthrough.

The first of Stravinsky’s Russian ballets, The Firebird, was dedicated to Andrey Rimsky-Korsakov, a friend of the same age, and son of composer Nikolai, who had been like a second father to Stravinsky, and also taught him orchestration.

Nikolai Rimsky-Korsakov’s influence can be more than discerned in the background of the music. Not least Stravinsky’s treatment of the orchestra should have garnered appreciation. Stravinsky’s use of musical motifs and structure show clear impressions from his role model. Some of the folk song tunes in The Firebird can also be found in Rimsky-Korsakov’s earlier work.

At night, the radiant firebird dances into the immortal Koschei’s enchanted garden, stalked by Prince Ivan. The prince manages to catch the bird after a duel, but sets it free again in return for a magical feather. In the garden, the prince watches 13 princesses dancing, and falls instantly in love with one of them. He reveals himself and is invited to participate in the princesses’ Khorovod, a Russian folk dance.

When dawn breaks, the princesses disappear into Koschei’s palace. Ivan forces the gate open to free his beloved, but is captured by Koschei’s monstruous subjects. The wizard threatens to turn the prince to stone, but Ivan raises the magical feather in despair, and the firebird comes to his rescue. It forces Koschei and all his subjects to dance an infernal dance to the point of exhaustion, and the egg that hides Koschei’s immortality is broken in pieces. The wizard dies, the spell is broken and the prisoners are freed.

Ann-Marie Nilsson