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Einar Englund


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(1916 – 1999)

Sven Einar Englund (June 17, 1916–June 27, 1999) was a Finnish composer.

Englund was born in Ljugam, and studied with Bengt Carlson at the Sibelius Academy. On a recommendation from Jean Sibelius, possibly on the basis of his piano quintet, he continued his studies with Aaron Copland at Tanglewood. He fought in World War II, an experience which inspired at least some of his earlier works. He died in 1999, also in Ljugam.

He gained tumultuous acclaim for his first two symphonies, but his fame was soon to be eclipsed by that of Sibelius, and he has still remained a somewhat neglected composer, in spite of the quality of his music.

Englund’s music can be called neo-classical, while maintaining the nationalism so prevalent in Sibelius’ music. Harmonies tend to be fresh, giving it a Nordic flavour. He also highly respected composers like Igor Stravinsky and Dmitri Shostakovich, dedicating his Symphony No. 4 (Nostalgic) in memory of the latter.

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