Iain Farrington

Pianist, organist, composer, arranger

Jean Sibelius: Symphony No. 2 for Chamber Orchestra


Sibelius composed his 2nd Symphony in 1901-2, and has long been one of his most popular works. Full of sunny optimism, dark tensions and a heroic conclusion, the piece is a powerful and personal symphonic journey. This arrangement aims to create a full orchestral picture using only the instruments in Sibelius’s score. Hearing the clarity of individual lines can reveal hidden aspects of the score, adding an intimacy in the performing and listening experience, as well as enabling this work to be performed in smaller venues without enormous financial constraints.


Listen to a live performance of the arrangement given by the Royal Northern Sinfonia here:


1st movement (9’30)

2nd movement (14’04)

3rd and 4th movements (18’56)


Instrumentation: flute, oboe, clarinet, bassoon, horn, trumpet, trombone, timpani, violin 1, violin 2, viola, cello, double bass, (strings minimum number 2,2,2,2,1)


The arrangement was commissioned by the Royal Northern Sinfonia for performances as part of the 2018 Great Exhibition of the North.