Home Classical Music LEBRECHT LISTENS | Focus On Finnish Artists In Two New Releases With Blended Outcomes

LEBRECHT LISTENS | Focus On Finnish Artists In Two New Releases With Blended Outcomes

LEBRECHT LISTENS | Focus On Finnish Artists In Two New Releases With Blended Outcomes


Helsinki, Finland (Photo: Tapio Haaja/CC0C Pixabay)
Helsinki, Finland (Photograph: Tapio Haaja/CC0C Pixabay)

Rautavaara & Martinů: Piano Concertos No. 3 (Bis); Overtures from Finland (Chandos)


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Like Russians at tennis, Finns now predominate within the manufacturing of classical music. Finnish conductors command orchestras from San Francisco to Paris, Finnish soloists obtain greater than their fair proportion of concerto dates and Finnish composers are extensively promoted. Disappointment on the current dying of the distinctive Kaija Saariaho merely magnified the dimensions of the footprint {that a} marginal nation of 5 million residents has planted throughout a global artwork type. Finnish musicians are exceedingly well-trained and motivated. The query of particular person high quality is seldom put beneath the highlight.

Einojuhani Rautavaara, who died in 2016, was the main composer of the post-Sibelius period. He wrote eight symphonies and a number of other operas, incomes headlines with a concerto for birds and orchestra titled Cantus Arcticus. His third piano concerto, recorded right here, is consultant of a lot of his work that I’ve heard. It meanders genially throughout an endless tundra of interchangeable notes. Rautavaara has an unique tic of seeming to make the soloist play two adjoining notes directly, producing an intriguing edge-of-tonality. The soloist Olli Mustonen and conductor Dalia Stasevska are each Finns, as is the Lahti Symphony Orchestra. You marvel if a overseas interpreter may proffer better pungency. Within the companion third concerto by the Czech Bohuslav Martinů, a post-war work of deep emotion, they not often strategy the web of shut engagement.

On Chandos, the British conductor Rumon Gamba has assembled an assortment of Finnish overtures beneath a canopy picture of a never-setting solar. Sibelius leads with the brilliantly crafted and nationally cohesive Karelia, adopted by his conductor pal Robert Kajanus with a bland symphonic overture. Leevi Madetoja’s comedy overture loses the jokes in translation and Armas Järnefelt (1865-1958), in two items, demonstrates why Sibelius was a lot taller than his friends. That stated, Uuno Klami’s atmospheric Nummisuutarit of 1936 is an actual discover and the Oulu Sinfonia is a superb ensemble. If you happen to’re affected by summer time warmth and tennis overload, begin right here.

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