Hollola Church. Photo: Juhana Säde.
Sun 13.8.2017 07.00 pm Hollola Church, Hollola
Lahti Organ Festival

Concerti a molti stromenti

The final concert of the 45th International Lahti Organ Festival

Vivaldi – Bach – van Wassenaer – Telemann

Petra Aminoff, traverso
Irma Niskanen, violin
Petteri Pitko, harpsichord
Finnish Baroque Orchestra


The Baroque concerto, a musical form born in Italy by Antonio Vivaldi and his contemporaries, deeply affected European composers also north of the Alps. The word concerto derives from the Latin verb ‘concertare’ that means both debating and harmonic cooperation. The alternating competition between soloists and the orchestra or different instrumental groups is the fundamental essence of the concerto. 

With Johann Sebastian Bach, the Italian-style concerto gained more depth and polyphonic richness, and his Brandenburg Concertos are known for the imaginative and vivid instrumentation. In the third concerto, the virtuosic patterns of the string instruments shape a kaleidoscopic and rich weave, and in the fifth concert, the flute, the violin and the harpsichord are brought forward as soloists.

Bach’s contemporary Georg Philipp Telemann also composed a generous number of concerts for one or more soloists. The Italian influence is especially strong in the double concerto for flute and violin. 

Unico Wilhelm van Wassenaer was a Dutch-born diplomat and cosmopolitan, and judged by his preserved musical work, he was clearly also a talented composer. He anonymously published a collection of six orchestra concertos in 1740, but as the result of later coincidences, they were mistaken to be composed by Pergolesi or Carlo Riciotti because of the Italian style. It was not until the 1980s that the mystery with the true composer was resolved. 

The Brandenburg Concertos are known for the innovative and colourful instrumentation. In these Baroque orchestra classics Johann Sebastian Bach let himself be inspired by the music of Antonio Vivaldi from Venice. The Italian influence can also be recognised in the works of the other composers of this concert, namely Georg Philipp Telemann and Unico Wilhelm van Wassenaer.

Duration: 1 h 15 min (no intermission)