Jean Sibelius for Kids

Jean Sibelius

One of the most famous people from Finland is the musician Jean Sibelius, a violinist and composer who was born in 1865. The year 2015 was the 150th anniversary of his birth, and there were many concerts, programs and other events celebrating this birthday in Finland, the United States, and other countries around the globe.

When Sibelius was born his name was “Janne,” but as he grew older he changed his name to the French version of his name, “Jean.” After high school he began studying law, but changed his studies to music. He loved to play the violin, but found that although he was a good violinist he was a better composer.

He wrote works for orchestra, violin, piano and chamber music. He is famous for writing seven symphonies, the Violin Concerto, and the famous Finlandia.

In 1892 at the age of 27 Sibelius married Aino Järnefelt. They had six daughters: Eva, Ruth, Katarina, Margareta, Heidi and Kirsti (who died when she was a young girl). They lived on a lake near the city of Järvenpää. Sibelius loved the solitude and nature, which inspired his work. He named his beloved home Ainola, after his wife.

Sibelius died in 1957. His home is now a museum that is open to the public in the summer months.