Esa Pietilä soloist with orchestra

”Pietilä´s performance of my concerto was sovereign” – Kalevi Aho

Latest addition to repertoire: Double Concerto Kairos Ludus for Tenor Saxophone, violin and orchestra (Pietilä) which will be premiered in -24 with Pietilä & Jyväskylä Sinfonia

Esa is committed to expanding the concerto repertoire of the saxophone through commissions, collaborations, and partnerships with orchestras and composers. In 2014 Pietilä premiered his concerto Graffiti Play for saxophone, improvising contemporary jazz trio and chamber orchestra which was premiered by Esa-Pekka Salonen and Avanti! Chamber Orchestra. In 2016 Pietilä premiered the Tenor Saxophone Concerto from famous Finnish composer Kalevi Aho, who composed and dedicated the concerto to Pietilä. In 2013 Pietilä  premiered a saxophone concerto “Grounds” by Eero Hämeenniemi. The Concerto was performed by Se ensemble with famous conductor Santtu Matias Rouvali. The piece was also composed and dedicated to Pietilä, taking advantage of Pietilä´s improvisational skills.

At the moment Pietilä is writing concerto for two saxophones and orchestra, which will be an honorary piece for Baltic Sea and its wildlife preservation. The Concerto will be called Baltic Sea Concerto

Available repertoire

with orchestra:

  • Kairos LudusDouble concerto for violin, tenor saxophone and orchestra (Pietilä), 35´. Fennica Gehrman, F.P.  2024 TBA with Pekka Kuusisto,  Pietilä & Jyväskylä Sinfonia

  • Graffiti Play (Esa Pietilä), concerto for chamber orchestra, Tenor Saxophone & jazz trio, 35 min. (fl, picc, oboe, clar, bassclar, bassoon/contrabassoon, 2 horns, trpt, trb, perc, strings 66442 (min) & contemporary improvising jazz bass player & drummer. F.P. 2014 by Esa Pietilä, Esa-Pekka Salonen & Avanti! Chamber Orchestra  Listen

  • Pulses, Waves & Dialoques (Pietilä), concerto for tenor saxophone & string orchestra, 18. min. (min. 4-3-2-2-1)  F.P 2017 with St. St. Michel Strings, cond. Hossein Pishkar


with chamber groups:

Blazing Flames (Pietilä), for tenor saxophone & string quartet, 28 min. (2018). F.P. 2018 with Kamus String Quartet

Hyperhelium (Pietilä) 18 min., fl, vl, clar, vlc, ac. bs, pno & Tenor saxophone soloist. Premiered by Tampere Raw Sextet & Esa Pietilä, 2016

HUNT! (Pietilä), 27 min. for percussion Quintet & tenor Saxophone. Premiered by OSUMA percussion ensemble Ensemble & Esa Pietilä, 2016

Asterion (Pietilä), 18 min., for tenor saxophone & 8-piece chamber group (fl, cl/bscl, vl, vla, vlc, cb, hn in F, piano), 18 min. (2014) F.P. 2014 with Zagros Ensemble


with various mixed setups:

Uirapuru, for male choir and Tenor saxophone (40 voices and up), 11 min.  F.P. 2017 with Akademiska Sångföreningen

Triptych, for tenor saxophone & church organ, 18 min. F.P. 2016

Fantasy, for tenor saxophone & church organ16 min F.P. TBA

Glow, for saxophone, acc & perc. with various live-electronics of solo and harmony instrument performer (alternatively, for any solo instrument, any harmony instrument & perc. (Esa Pietilä)


solo saxophone pieces:

Ablauf (Magnus Lindberg)

FIRE! (Esa Pietilä)

Sphere (Esa Pietilä)

Colors of Liberation (Esa Pietilä)

Land – Sea – Air (Esa Pietilä)

Chaconne & improvisations (J.S. Bach)

Elegy Time (Esa Pietilä)

In the Spirit of Free Key (Esa Pietilä)