Two Finnish composers in the spotlight

Award-winning young composers Sebastian Hilli and Sauli Zinovjev unveil new works at the opening of the next Musica Nova contemporary music festival 1.-12.2.2017.

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Musica nova Helsinki is Finland’s largest contemporary music festival. Held biennially, it presents the very latest music, composers now making their mark internationally, and contemporary classics.

“Everybody benefits from cross-programming at festivals. There’s a huge potential for contemporary classical, honestly, in this hipster scene because it’s good music that we’re doing. It’s not just regular classical concertgoers who might be interested,” says composer Sauli Zinovjev, 28.

“There’s this pluralism now in music where there aren’t such strict categories. There are overlaps that are quite natural for our time,” agrees his friend Sebastian Hilli, 26. The two sip espresso at the Helsinki Music Centre, where they’ll premiere new works during the Musica Nova contemporary music festival (Feb 1-12, 2017).

The composers are optimistic about the future. In autumn 2017, both will premiere longer pieces: Zinovjev a violin concerto and Hilli a work for orchestra and about 500 singers.