Sibelius Festival 2016 Dima Slobodeniouk, conductor
The Tempest is incidental music to Shakespeare's The Tempest. Sibelius composed it in 1925–26, at about the same time as he wrote his tone poem Tapiola. Sibelius derived two suites for piano from the score. The music is said to display an astounding richness of imagination and inventive capacity, and is considered by some as one of Sibelius's greatest achievements. He represented individual characters through instrumentation choices: particularly admired was his use of harps and percussion to represent Prospero, said to capture the "resonant ambiguity of the character".