JOHN FERNSTROM (1897 - 1961)
The notion of Renaissance Man has lost much of its original sense, now to be applied generally to any person with a great zest for life in all its aspects and with an unlimited confidence in mans ability to pass beyond any boundary. The description, however, may accurately be applied to John Fernström with his overwhelming joy in life and beauty, youthful curiosity about its many artistic aspects, unyieldingly responsible attitude towards technical knowledge as the foundation all artistic creative activity and, finally, his generous sharing of these gifts as a teacher. Poet, painter, founder in 1951 of the internationally famous Nordic Youth Orchestra, he was also distinguished as a composer, with an impressive list of compositions of breadth and variety. These include twelve symphonies, solo concertos, songs, choral and stage works. His chamber music includes eight string quartets.