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London Symphony Orchestra/Tilson Thomas

Half Six Fix: Sibelius Symphony No 5

Michael Tilson Thomas

If music could sound like a Scandinavian sunrise, it would sound like Sibelius's Fifth Symphony. So skip the rush hour: Michael Tilson-Thomas is serving up refreshment for the spirit.

Sibelius’s Fifth Symphony is one of those pieces that you already know without realising it, crowned with a tune so simple, and so good, that when you hear it for the first time, you feel like you’ve known it your whole life. And you certainly never forget it.

The story goes that it came to Sibelius when he looked at the skies above his home in Finland, and saw a flight of swans. ‘God, what beauty!’ he commented, but the power and elemental strength of this majestic symphony is a natural wonder in its own right. Michael Tilson Thomas is an old friend of the LSO, and the Orchestra’s Conductor Laureate: today he introduces and conducts a symphony that blows fresh Nordic air through a London rush hour.

This concert is part of Half Six Fix, a different way to experience the LSO, with an introduction to the music from Michael Tilson Thomas, and digital programme notes on your phone or device. Grab a drink, take your seat and enjoy the music.

Barbican Hall