Jorma Panula. Photo by Tommi Kosonen/International Jorma Panula Conducting Competition.

In Friday’s (9/8) New York Times, Joshua Barone writes, “ ‘He doesn’t like talking about himself, Marja Kantola-Panula said, gesturing to her husband, Jorma Panula, across their dining table while he sat silently. He had been asked a question about his sprawling presence in classical music as arguably the world’s most influential conducting teacher…. His approach hasn’t really changed in the half-century he has spent shaping young conductors—at the storied Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, and now through master classes and his own school. Think of major Finnish conductors working around the world today—there are a disproportionate number of them—and chances are they studied with Panula. If this country is the world’s top exporter of conducting talents, then he is something like a farmer, cultivating generations of artists: those leading the field, like Susanna Mälkki and Esa-Pekka Salonen, and those emerging in a blaze, like Klaus Mäkelä…. Dalia Stasevska, 38, the chief conductor of the Lahti Symphony Orchestra … [said], ‘What is so brilliant about his teaching is that it leads to giving space to grow and find your personal style in conducting.’ No two Panula alumni look the same onstage.”