Interviews
19 May 2021

Susanna Mälkki in conversation with Esko Laine (18 min.)

In her first appearances with the Berliner Philharmoniker, Susanna Mälkki devoted herself to the music of classical Modernism with works by Anton Webern, Igor Stravinsky, Ferruccio Busoni, Jean Sibelius and Béla Bartók. In May 2021, she continued this theme with a performance of Bartók’s only opera Bluebeard’s Castle. With Vista by Kaija Saariaho, she also presented a contemporary composition for the first time. The work was given its German premiere here, and had already been premiered by the conductor in Helsinki a few weeks before. In our interview, she talks to the Philharmoniker’s principal bass player Esko Laine, who, like Mälkki and Saariaho, was born in the Finnish capital. In addition to the dramaturgy of the performed pieces, the conversation focuses on the question of how Bartók intertwines male and female perspectives in his ambiguous stage work.

The concert