...is from Finland and he's a pretty well-regarded composer here and, well, everywhere. You can read more about him here.
(That's his face in the background.)
Rob and I had the incredible good fortune of attending one the Helsinki Orchestra's rehearsals of works by Jean Sibelius earlier this year.
Sadly, I'm not a big fan of his music. It's a bit dark and moody for my tastes, which is odd because I studied classical music for 15 years--almost majored in music in college--and I loved playing moody Russian compositions. I thought the styles would be similar. Perhaps they are. But perhaps my tastes have changed over the years....
I am a big fan of this monument to Sibelius, however, which is located near the sea in Helsinki quite close to the boys' school.
There are more than 600 hollow steel pipes welded together by artist Eila Hiltunen.
The experience reminded me a bit of viewing Chicago's beloved "bean" sculpture in that you can stand underneath the sculpture, get "up close and personal" and feel the cool steel if you reach out to touch it.
I miss the Bean. I miss Chicago.