Estonian American conductor Neeme Järvi was born on 7 June 1937 in Tallinn, where his initial studies were followed by tuition from Yevgeny Mravinsky, and Nikolai Rabinovich at the Leningrad Conservatory.
He began his career working for the Estonian Radio and Television Symphony Orchestra, the Estonian National Symphony Orchestra and Estonian National Opera in Tallinn.
For twenty-two years from 1982 he was principal conductor of the Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra, holding that position for longer than anyone else in the orchestra's history and working to increase the orchestra's size, reputation and recording profile. He is now the orchestra's Chefdirigent Emeritus (principal conductor emeritus).
Järvi's other positions include principal conductor of the Royal Scottish National Orchestra (1984-88), music director of the Detroit Symphony Orchestra (1990-2005), music director of the New Jersey Symphony Orchestra (2005-9) and chief conductor of Het Residentie Orkest in Den Haag, Netherlands (2005-2012).
Järvi has made more than four hundred recordings for BIS, Chandos, Deutsche Grammophon and other labels, and is best-known recording-wise for his interpretations of Estonian composers and for Romantic and twentieth century music.
Spotlight. One of the Happiest French Symphonies - Gerald Fenech is impressed by Édouard Lalo's orchestral music. '... consistently transparent and intensely alive.'
Spotlight. Polish and Sensitivity - Stephen Francis Vasta listens to music for piano and orchestra by Anton Rubinstein. 'The performance is excellent ...'
CD Spotlight. Heavy Going - Anton Rubinstein piano concertos Nos 3 and 5, heard by Stephen Francis Vasta. 'Anna Shelest does what she can with the material - her big chords are resonant, and her sparkling arpeggios delightful ...'
CD Spotlight. Unforced Musicality - The three big Tchaikovsky ballets, heard by Stephen Francis Vasta. 'Järvi always maintains the right lightness ...'
CD Spotlight. Joyous Occasions - Music by members of the Strauss family delights Gerald Fenech. 'A thoroughly stimulating issue, dashingly performed by Estonian forces conducted by the veteran Neeme Järvi ...'
CD Spotlight. Brisk Tempi - Neeme Järvi conducts Chabrier, heard by Stephen Francis Vasta. 'Rhythms could often be more strongly marked and firmly grounded ...'
CD Spotlight. Cogently Structured - Orchestral music by Joachim Raff, heard by Gerald Fenech. '... very well portrayed by Järvi ... and the Suisse Romande Orchestra ...'
Ensemble. Sensuous Depths - A selection of orchestral concerts at London's Royal Festival Hall, heard by Bill Newman
Ensemble. High Voltage - Sol Gabetta joins Slatkin and the Detroit Symphony Orchestra, reviewed by Lawrence Budmen
Ensemble. A veritable dynamo - A conversation with Paavo Järvi, and a review of his Miami concert in April, by Lawrence Budmen