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The Benelux countries and Finland

In 2015, the Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux is marking the 150th anniversary of the birth of the composer Jean Sibelius in a variety of ways. Our SibEUlius programme highlights the complexity of Sibelius; in addition to symphony concerts and performances by some of Europe’s most highly-regarded chamber musicians, audiences will also be able experience more unexpected examples of how Sibelius’s legacy is interpreted by young artists across a number of disciplines today.

It has been said that, rather than reaching out towards the world with depictions of nature’s majesty, Sibelius’s music turns inwards to give voice to how the natural world affects our very soul. It would not be an exaggeration to say that nature was, for Sibelius, his greatest source of inspiration. In honour of this, we have planted a Jean and Aino Sibelius memorial birch tree sourced from the forest close to the Sibelius’s family home, Ainola, here in Brussels.

In addition to the concerts, audiences in the Benelux countries have also been able to discover Sibelius through documentary filmmaker Pekka Hakko’s touring exhibition. As a particular mark of respect to the composer, the institute have also commissioned Brussels craft brewery En Stoemelings to produce a limited edition Sibelius lager, named Sibru. The 150 numbered bottles will be gifted to cultural practitioners and their partners who helped us organise the programme for this jubilee year.

In collaboration with:
Sibelius 150

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Finnish Cultural Institute for the Benelux
Boomstraat 14/3
1000 Brussels

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