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Fredrik Pacius

Updated on December 23, 2010

1809-1891

Fredrik Pacius was a German-Finnish composer. Born in Hamburg, Germany on March 19, 1809.

After musical studies under Moritz Haupt-mann and Ludwig Spohr at Kassel, he emigrated to Finland, achieving distinction as a choral and orchestral conductor and becoming director of the music department at the University of Helsinki in 1834. Pacius composed extensively. His nse of genuine and simulated Finnish folk materials inaugurated the Finnish national musical style that culminated in the music of Jean Sibefins.

Pacius composed in most musical forms. His widest fame was won with his opera Ktaig Karls Jakt, to a text by Zachris Topelius. Although its first concert performance (Helsinki, March 24, 1852) was sung in Swedish and it was not heard in Finnish until 1905, it came to be regarded as the first Finnish opera. He composed die Finnish national anthem Maamme (Ow Land), first song May 13, 1848. Pacius' songs are still frequently heard in Finland, but most of his music now remains almost wholly unperformed.

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