Fanfare: What have been some of your career highlights since your tenure as CSO Music Director ended in 2011?
Paavo Järvi: I always enjoy conducting in Japan and traveled there with Orchestre de Paris recently. Japanese music writers voted our performance at Tokyo’s Suntory Hall to be the best concert of the year, which was a tremendous honor. I also returned to conduct both the Berlin Philharmonic and Vienna Philharmonic this season, which is always a thrill.
Fanfare: What kinds of exciting projects are on the horizon for you?
PJ: I’m recording the cycle of Sibelius symphonies with Orchestre de Paris for Sony, and a DVD set of concert videos with the Frankfort Radio Symphony Orchestra is being released that features all of Mahler’s symphonies.
Fanfare: You have developed a rich recording legacy over the past several years. What have been some of your favorite recent recording projects?PJ: My favorite recent Deutsche Grammophon recording is an all-Poulenc disc with Orchestre de Paris that featured Stabat Mater, Gloria and Litanies à la Vierge noire. I also really enjoyed recording Schuman at Pier 2: The Symphonies, which includes all four Schumann symphonies with the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie.
Fanfare: Tell us about the upcoming film, Maestro.
PJ: I met filmmaker David Donnelly, who was unfamiliar with classical music, but began coming to many concerts. He set out to make a documentary film that would demystify the art form by showing an orchestra’s inner workings through the eyes of a conductor, hence the title. He followed me for two years, performing on three continents. He wanted to show how I live, work, prepare for concerts and interact with musicians. The hope is that the film will make people more comfortable coming to the concert hall.
Fanfare: Who have been some of your favorite artistic collaborators lately?
PJ: There are soloists that I always enjoy working with, many of whom are quite familiar to the audience in Cincinnati like Janine Jansen, Christian Tetzlaff, Alexander Toradze, Yefim Bronfman, Alisa Weilerstein, Steven Isserlis, to name just a few. These are of course artists I’ve worked with for years, but I always look forward to making music with artists for the first time and forging new collaborations.
Fanfare: Besides making music with the CSO, what are some of your plans for your upcoming trip to Cincinnati?
PJ: My kids live in Cincinnati and I always look forward to spending time with them whenever I’m in town. The city always feels like home, and sometimes I visit incognito to see them.
Fanfare: Anything else you would like to add?
PJ: I’m really looking forward to seeing many friends – both in the Orchestra and in the audience. I made many lasting friendships over my ten years in Cincinnati, and love coming back to make music with the CSO and see many familiar faces at Music Hall.