Mariss Jansons, who died yesterday, made his breakthrough as music director of the Oslo Philharmonic from 1979 to 2000. The present Oslo chief, Vasily Petrenko, grew up in awe of his gift in St Petersburg. He writes to Slipped Disc:
I have always felt like I am walking a little in some of the footsteps of Mariss Jansons: most tangibly in the personal and artistic footprints he left with his long and illustrious tenure at the Oslo-Filharmonien, where it is such an honour to be his successor, but he has been a defining and deeply beloved presence from my earliest days, attending his rehearsals and masterclasses in St Petersburg, and through his legacy of concerts, recordings, lessons and advice, that have always been a touchstone for me. Thank you, dear Maestro, for all you’ve given to us, for your smile, generosity and warmth, and for simply bringing all of your heart into our musical world. It was a joy to be able to make music two weeks ago with your wonderful colleagues in the Symphonieorchester des Bayerischen Rundfunks, although those circumstances are now framed with such sadness. You will always be alive in our memories, in our souls and in our performances.
Among further tributes:
Christian Thielemann, Music Director of the Bayreuth Festival: “Mariss Jansons is dead – what a shocking news and what an immense loss. I was fortunate enough to be close to him as an artist and as a person, and I will continue to feel this closeness! “