Wednesday, November 11, 2015

SIBELIUS Kuolema & King Kristian II

"Segerstam directs with his customary big heart and acute sensitivity for texture and mood… The young Finnish baritone Waltteri Torikka gives a wonderful account of the haunting ‘Fool’s Song of the Spider’… Soprano Pia Pajala makes a heady thing of Elsa’s song ‘Eilaa, eilaa’, while Torikka’s lustrous timbre sent shivers down my spine in ‘Paavali’s Song’. …Segerstam offers most attentive support. The engineering is truthful throughout." --Gramophone, August 2015

"Segerstam draws fine, idiomatic playing from the Turku players, allowing the music to speak for itself… Recommended." --Classical Net, August 2015

Jean Sibelius was the most significant figure in the formation of Finland’s musical identity. Beyond the famous symphonies and tone poems he was prolific in other genres, including music for the theatre. King Christian II and Kuolema ensured Sibelius’s fame throughout Europe, the latter including the haunting melody (track 2) which would later become the Valse triste. The Two Songs from Twelfth Night contrast the spectre of death with more comical moods, an effect also to be heard in one of Sibelius’s least performed orchestral works, the Overture in A minor.

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