Anna-Liisa Bezrodny began her violin studies already at the age of two, first with her parents and later at the Sibelius Academy and in London, where she won the most prestigious prize of the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, the Gold Medal, in 2006. She has also won a number of other awards, including the Martin Musical Scholarship Award in London and first prize at the Heifetz International Violin Competition. In 2005 Bezrodny was awarded the PROMIS Award for talented young musicians by the London Symphony Orchestra, and in the same year she received an honorary prize from the Pro Musica Foundation in Finland.
Over the years, Bezrodny has appeared as soloist with orchestras in some of the most prestigious concert venues in the world, such as Gewandhaus Leipzig, Royal Festival Hall, Barbican Hall, Wigmore Hall and Konzerthaus Berlin, and worked with conductors such as Leif Segerstam, Neeme Järvi, Paavo Järvi, Leonid Grin, Nikolay Alexeev, Eri Klas and Okko Kamu.
Anna-Liisa Bezrodny is a highly devoted chamber musician and has collaborated with the likes of Ivry Gitlis, Maxim Vengerov and Ida Händel. Her repertoire ranges from baroque to contemporary music, and she has also premiered several contemporary works by British, Finnish and Estonian composers.
In addition to her busy solo career, Bezrodny has worked as a teacher at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama and the Purcell School in London since 2007. She is extremely passionate about the music education of future generations and has taught master classes e.g. in Norway, Sweden, Brazil and the United Kingdom. Starting in 2023, she will be serving as artistic director of the Tallinn Chamber Music Festival in Estonia and artistic director of the Estonian Sinfonietta.
Anna-Liisa Bezrodny currently plays an Amati violin, on loan from the Finnish Cultural Foundation.
Naantali Music Festival starts with a bang! Duo per Due, composed especially for this concert by Auli Sallinen, is premiered by Arto Noras, who has led the Music Festival for 40 years, and the new artistic director, violinist Elina Vähälä. Belgian composer César Franck’s works are filled with passion and the pathos of late Romanticism, while Korean composer Jeajoon Ryu’s cello sonata translates the beauty of the 19th century into contemporary language.
Finnish music was born in the forest. Finnish music was born in the forest. Jean Sibelius heard the echoes of both his great symphonies and his aphoristic piano pieces in birdsong and humming trees, and it was from nature’s mysterious seduction that the thrilling story of the Wood Nymph was born. For Outi Tarkiainen, inspired by the nature of Lapland, the forest provides a hiding place, a platform for spiritual growth and a home for ancient stories. Outi Tarkiainen is one of the fastest rising Finnish composers of her generation internationally.
New, old, borrowed
It sounds antique, it has an ancient name and a patinated surface – but is it old? While Ottorino Respighi and Alfred Schnittke’s series resonate with the glories of early Baroque, Anna Clyne’s Rest These Hands brings about goosebumps with sounds from beyond history. The concert takes listeners on a journey into a past that may never have existed. The programme culminates in the performance of the youngest performer of the Naantali Music Festival of all times, violinist Lilja Haatainen, who is only 12 years old but has already won her share of international competitions.
Four of the concert’s enduring favourites tell stories of life and death. While Mozart’s quartet rings with uninhibited joy, Johannes Brahms’s trio, composed in memory of his mother, is an ethereal picture of beautiful memories. Jörg Widmann’s Jagdquartett, one of the most performed pieces of our time, takes us on a terrifying hunting trip from which there is only one way out.
Sound of Passion
“These notes of mine kiss all of you. They call for you passionately,” wrote Leoš Janáček to his young beloved in the cover letter of his string quartet. Richard Wagner’s haunting Tristan and Isolde also deals with lust and longing for one’s beloved. American composer Amy Beach’s piano quintet, full of late Romantic passion, has become a favourite with audiences and critics alike in recent years.
In honorem maris
Hardly any element of nature resounds in music as clearly as the sea: its waves, its peace, its endlessness – and its unstoppable power. The soft swells and treacherous undertows of the traditional In Honorem Maris concert is provided by the music of Debussy, Fagerlund and Ravel.
Moments in Time
In Naantali, the annual cycle does not follow familiar paths. Uneven rhythms and fiery pace take over Sebastian Fagerlund’s Octet and Astor Piazzolla’s Winter, while Vernon Duke takes a Broadway bathed in light to a Paris in spring. Experimental music master George Crumb’s haunting Music for a Summer Evening resonates with every listener.