”I was very impressed with his ability to rehearse the orchestra quickly and effectively, his clear stick technique as well as his musical instincts.”
— Osmo Vänskä
Music Director, Minnesota Orchestra
Music Director, Seoul Philharmonic Orchestra
Sauli Saarinen (b. 1988) is a Finnish Conductor and Musician currently completing a Masters Degree in Wind Conducting at the Sibelius Academy (Helsinki, Finland) under the guidance of Lecturer Petri Komulainen. In addition, he has also studied with Jorma Panula at the ‘Panula Academy’ and in the Orchestra Conducting class of the Universität für Musik und darstellende Kunst Wien with Professor Johannes Wildner.
Sauli's first performance as a conductor took place in the spring of 2019, when he worked as an assistant at the Musica Nova Helsinki festival in Juhani Nuorvala's Flash Flash opera and conducted the opera's premiere of the Espoo City Theater. In the same year, he was invited to conduct the Representative orchestra of the President of Finland for the orchestra's 200th anniversary festival in Helsinki. The concert included music by composers Holst, Weber, Merikanto, Linkola and Sibelius.
Sauli has participated in many master classes in Finland and abroad. In 2019, the Finnish Cultural Foundation awarded him a scholarship, which enabled him to travel to St. Petersburg to study Tchaikovsky's music under the guidance of Leonid Korchmar, the long-time conductor of the Mariinsky Theater. That same year, Sauli was invited to the Dartington Summer Music Festival in the UK to study the music of Mozart, Britten and Stravinsky under the direction of Timothy Redmond and Graeme Jenkins. Together with Jorma Panula, he has studied more traditional repertoire by composers Beethoven, Brahms, Sibelius and Dvořák. In addition to this, he has be selected to Masterclasses with David Zinman, Osmo Vänskä, Hannu Lintu, Johannes Schlaefli, Jukka Iisakkila, Atso Almila, Felix Hauswirth and Nils Schweckendiek.
During his studies, he has conducted Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra, St. Petersburg Symphony Orchestra (Russia), Dartington Festival Orchestra (UK), MÁV Symphony Orchestra (Hungary), Kuopio City Orchestra, Vaasa City Orchestra, Representative orchestra of the President of Finland, Polytechnic Orchestra and NYKY Ensemble.
Sauli's own instrument is the trumpet. In 2012-2014, he worked as a principal trumpet, first in the Vaasa City Orchestra and then in the Pori Sinfonietta. He now works as a sub-principal trumpet in the Representative orchestra of the President of Finland and plays the lead trumpet in the Guards Combo, which appears annually in a live broadcast of the Independence Day celebration reception (Linnan juhlat). Sauli has been a board member of the Finnish Trumpet Guild since 2019.
His studies have been generously supported by the Rutzy Foundation, the Sibelius Academy Foundation and the Finnish Cultural Foundation