Sibelius’s Sixth and Seventh Symphonies. On the surface, the two works are vastly different in all aspects. It is curious, therefore, to realize that Sibelius wrote them more or less simultaneously, and they share many musical bits between them.
More important, both are unqualified masterpieces of the Finnish composer’s final creative period. I love them both, but the Sixth remains one of my absolute favorite works of classical music (long-time readers will remember that in my very first blog post, I recounted my story of driving 500 miles to hear Osmo conduct the Sixth in his very first concert with the Minnesota Orchestra, long before he was appointed music director).