Aug 3, 2018


6&7 July 2018
WDR Sinfonieorchester, Pekka Kuusisto

“Bravi were elicited by the pagan spectacle of Stravinsky’s “Spring Sacrifice”, which, despite all its vehemence and coarse rhythms, notably puts the orchestra’s current playing culture to the test. And after eight years with Saraste, this is really impressive. Under his encouraging grasp, Stravinsky’s ballet machine “Le Sacre de Printemps”… reached the finish line as the winner; the bravi were well-deserved.”

9 July 2018
Olaf Weiden, Kölnische Rundschau

“Stravinsky’s music, oscillating between primitivism and construcivism, found congenial interpreters in the excellently prepared WDR Sinfonieorchester, which under chief conductor Jukka-Pekka Saraste transformed the Cologne Philharmonie into orgiastic pandemonium.”

9 July 2018
Rainer Nonnenmann, Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger

Jul 1, 2018

Tour in Japan with the NHK Symphony Orchestra

J-P takes the orchestra on a four-stop tour of Japan July 21-24
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May 17, 2018

First disc of Beethoven symphony cycle recording with WDR Sinfonieorchester out on June 1

The complete cycle of Beethoven’s symphonies was recorded live in Cologne at the Koelner Philharmonie in November 2017 and February 2018.

May 4, 2018


J-P and the WDR Sinfonieorchester make the journey back to China and South Korea for twelve concerts.
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May 1, 2018


20&21 April 2018
WDR Sinfonieorchester, Arabella Steinbacher

“It was a true experience to listen to the various parts of the mosaic being brought together and gradually put into context, especially in the triumphantly elaborate, exalted finale.”

23 April 2018
Marianne Kierspel, Kölner Stadt-Anzeiger

Mar 22, 2018


23&24 February 2018
WDR Sinfonieorchester, Christiane Karg,Ingeborg Danz, Maximilian Schmitt, Tareq Nazmi,
NDR Chor, WDR Rundfunkchor

“With his flexible conducting, he elicited a smooth and cultivated sound from his orchestra. Swift, but by no means forced tempi instilled a wonderful liveliness to the music.”

“…transparent sound, nuanced down to the smallest detail without neglecting the overarching line”

“The Pastorale was illuminated with all the refinement it deserves. Saraste created ravishing transitions, placing emphasis on seemingly trivial matters such as trills or simple accompanying figures, always keeping an eye on the overall form. … on the whole a wonderful performance.”

“…a captivating interpretation, leaving a fabulous impression. A mercurial first movement, a wonderfully poignant third, and finally a breathtaking Finale that left nothing to be desired…”

26 February 2018
Mathias Nofze, General-Anzeiger

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Mar 9, 2018

Brahms: Symphony No. 4

Profil – PH17085
“Jukka-Pekka Saraste’s series of Brahms symphonies with his WDR Symphony Orchestra is particularly exciting as a surprising approach is taken for each single work, according to its individual character. Saraste and his orchestra savour the Phrygian key of the slow movement’s main motif to the full, with perfect beauty of sound. The Allegro giocoso sounds powerful and exuberant, and the finale determined.”

klassik erleben, March 2018

Mar 4, 2018

Out now: Brahms Symphony No. 4

WDR Sinfonieorchester’s Brahms symphony cycle will be completed on March 16 with the release of Brahms’ 4th symphony, recorded at Kölner Philharmonie.
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Feb 14, 2018


1 February 2018
Zürcher Kammerorchester, Radu Lupu

“Beethoven’s Symphony No. 2 in D major op. 36 shines in glorious colours, captivates with taut dynamics and occasionally almost Mozartian lightness, displaying grace and finesse. The force of the entries never seems overbearing, clearing the way for dramatic climaxes”.

3 February 2018
Svend Peternell, Berner Zeitung