Sibelius - Tapiola, En Saga, 8 Songs
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Cat No: ODE12895
Number of Discs: 1
Release Date: 13th October 2017
ArtistsAnne Sofie von Otter (mezzo-soprano)
Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra
Sibeliusís tone poem Tapiola, written shortly after the Seventh Symphony, may be regarded as the culmination of a period that began with the Fifth Symphony, a period where Sibelius created music that grew organically out of tiny germs into huge processes. It was completed in 1926 and remained Sibeliusís last great orchestral work. In Tapiola, Sibelius appears to equate the primacy of nature with the value of art for its own sake, the unattainable truths of which remain uneroded by time or by the shifting ideals of mankind. Sibelius stated to his private secretary: ĎMy inspiration for Tapiola came wholly from nature, or even more accurately from something inexpressible in wordsí.
The genesis of En saga, originally premiered in 1892, is also shrouded in mystery, and even later in life Sibelius was reluctant to go into any detail regarding its content. It is among Sibeliusís earliest orchestral works, and its original title in Swedish, En saga, refers to ancient Nordic tales of heroes and gods. Although En saga is among the most popular works by Sibelius today, the premiere of the work was not a success and Sibelius revised the score in 1902.
On the occasion of the 150th anniversary of Sibeliusís birth in 2015 composer Aulis Sallinen orchestrated a cycle of songs for mezzo-soprano Anne Sophie von Otter. This cycle of eight songs contains several less known songs in a cavalcade juxtaposing human emotions and innermost thoughts with the natural environment and experiences in nature.
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