“A very special lure on the Baltic Sea Festival’s progamme was the young teenage Dmitri Shostakovich’s first symphony from 1925, and it also became Paavo Järvi’s real triumph. Here was a young, hungry orchestra which was also very congenial; musicians who both can and will bite on the challenges which scores and conductor present them.

What a mood of Bolshevik twenty-seventeen and a self-conscious teenage genius! Here you will find spooky cabaret, spanky puppets and pointed montage within the framework of a safe and small creative orchestration. Paavo Järvi triggered his festival musicians in silent movie tempo and with perfect articulation.”
Dagens Nyheter, Camilla Lundberg, 26 August 2017

“… The Sibelius symphony (no. 2) showed an orchestra with a nerve and willingness to play all the way … the energy and cohesion to create an uncontrollable and direct symphonic world that hit right in the diaphragm.”
Politiken, Henrik Friis, 24 August 2017

“The concert of the Turku Music Festival on Saturday night became a poignant tribute. Paavo Järvi, director of the Estonian Festival Orchestra, dedicated the concert to the memory of the victims (of the previous day’s attack). The performance began with a minute’s silence, after which he conducted Jean Sibelius’s Valse Triste … Meanwhile, the performance of the 18 year old Dmitry Shostakovich’s chamber symphony was both amazing and vivid. Paavo Järvi has always had the ability to clearly outline a dense orchestral texture, but now there is more warmth and flight.”
Helsingen Sanomat, Vesa Siren, 19 August 2017

“For the first time ever Paavo Järvi has been showing other nations why the Estonian Festival Orchestra is among the world’s best – travelling to other Nordic countries after their annual gathering in Estonia’s summer capital of Pärnu, with the big bastions of Vienna and Berlin to come early next year.

“… That phenomenon of top players burning for a conductor they love and respect has been a constant at the three festivals I’ve attended … And this surely unrepeatable performance of Sibelius’s Second Symphony almost burned the house down with its incandescence … the slow movement especially more inspired and dangerously intense than I’ve ever heard it.
Theartsdesk.com, David Nice, 24 August 2017

“The concert combined Danish, Finnish and Russian music reflecting Estonia’s Geo-Political position …  The Estonian Festival Orchestra gleamed above all through the brilliant ensemble of the first violins led by the Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen’s concert master, Florian Donderer … With a small first outing to neibouring Turku, Copenhagen and Stockholm, the Estonian Festival Orchestra looks forward to the 100th anniversary celebrations of Estonian Independence in January 2018 and to their first major European tour in January. And this tour will allow audiences in Vienna to hear them live for the very first time.”
Radio klassik Stephansdom, Ursula Magnes, 18 August 2017

“The rich program of the Pärnu Music Festival reflects the human concept that the conductor Paavo Järvi embodies as its guiding spirit … Under his unpretentious, collegial, always professional direction, the ensemble is thus imbued with the spirit of the Lucerne Festival Orchestra – and is already of an amazing standard.

“… Atmosphere means a lot, but first and foremost the music is fascinating .. witness how Paavo Järvi,in impeccable acoustics, first neatly drew the individual strands of Nielsen’s “Aladdin” suite together into dazzling scenes, which was followed by a small miracle: in a run-through of the first two movements of Sibelius’s Second Symphony, the brilliant clarity suddenly also gave way into an enormous emotional depth, which was not least born from the intimate string sound. The great music of the Finn, as newly born in a Pan-European spirit: a moving promise.”
Die Presse,Walter Weidringer, 18 August 2017

“What is so enchantingly charming and magical about this time forgotten place? The concentration of the musicians who gather around Paavo Järvi is the one thing. And the absolute absence of any pretention”
Die Welt, Manuel Brug, 17 August 2017

“The world-famous Järvi conducting dynasty, handpicked musicians, a modern concert hall and the historical buildings are Pärnu’s ingredients for the musical event in the so-called “summer capital of Estonia” … Musicians from all over Europe came to Pärnu to become part of a summer festival of the generations. Many of them are Estonians who work abroad. Others have been infected by their enthusiasm. And the Estonian music scene is concentrated for two weeks in the small coastal town, where the Järvi family opens a window into an ideal music world”
Deutschlandfunk Kultur,Julia Kaiser, 14 August 2017