1915-1919

Sibelius at his desk in 1915.


Sibelius's 50th birthday on December 8th, 1915, was the occasion for a great national celebration. At the anniversary concert Sibelius conducted, among other works the first version of Symphony no. 5.


Christmas 1916 in Ainola.

Sibelius had six daughters, one of whom died shortly after birth.


Finland declared its independence on December 6th, 1917. In the spring of 1918, civil war broke out. Sibelius had to seek refuge in the war-famished Helsinki. The pictures shows German reinforcements of the Whites in Helsinki, a scene of some of the battles. After the war, life slowly returned back to normal; international connections were reopened, and Sibelius was again able to travel, to the Nordic countries, Britain, Italy ... Years 1923-24 saw the completion of Symphony nos. 6 and 7. Never ending financial troubles - made worse by inflation, and Sibelius's way of handling money, made it necessary for Sibelius to go on composing numerous little pieces, mainly for the piano.



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