Einar Englund (1916-1999), composer, pianist, composition teacher and music critic, studied composition and orchestration at the Sibelius Academy. Recommended by Jean Sibelius he continued his studies at the Tanglewood Music Center under Aaron Copland. Englund was a great concert pianist and skilled improviser, which influenced his style possibly more than anything else; his works are the product of true and practical musicianship.
Einar Englund's brightest youth was spent at the front and he once said that all his music is in some way about the war. Englund entered the Finnish musical scene in 1946 with his first symphony ("War Symphony") and since then favoured grand forms. His oeuvre includes seven symphonies and six concertos, among them the popular Piano Concerto No. 1 dating from 1955 and the Flute Concerto from 1985. In the late 70s Englund became interested in chamber music and composed also works for solo instruments.
Englund's musical language was, in his own words, based on sweeping terms and great symphonic lines. He built his works on themes, clear harmonies and polyphonic thinking. As a composer he was a neo-classicist, whose music based on tonality and included long, compact and even romantic melodic lines side by side with spicy dissonances, energetic rhythm and vigorous orchestration.