Virtual Concert: Brilliance

Friday 19.3.2021 19.00 Spring Series 2 & 3
YouTube
Spring Series 2 Spring Series 3
Friday 19.3.2021 19.00 YouTube
Spring Series 2 Spring Series 3

Malin Broman appears as soloist in a Mozart Violin Concerto. This programme also features Fanny Mendelssohn’s lovely melodic String Quartet and Andrea Tarrodi’s Serenade which shows influences ranging from Mozart to Miles Davis.

Live concert is cancelled.  Virtual concert will be on Tapiola SInfonietta´s YouTube channel on Friday 19th March 2021 at 7 pm (EET). Link to the virtual concert: Brilliance
Recording will be available on YouTube until further notice.

Artists

Program

Fanny Mendelssohn

String Quartet in E flat major, arranged for string orchestra

Fanny Mendelssohn (1805–1847): String Quartet in E flat major (arranged for string orchestra)

The life of Fanny Mendelssohn (later Fanny Hensel) was bound up in many ways with that of her brother Felix, her junior by four years. It also serves as a sad example of how different the paths charted out for women and men were in the bourgeois society of the 19th century. Fanny and Felix were exceptionally close since childhood and were both taught music by composer Carl Friedrich Zelter. Both showed extraordinary talent at an early age, and they actively critiqued each other’s compositions. Yet Fanny was not allowed to develop her talent into a career like Felix; both Felix himself and their otherwise quite enlightened banker father opposed this.
Professional music-making not being an option, Fanny Mendelssohn focused her musical energies on Sunday concerts that she organised at her parents’ home in Berlin. Most of her own works were written for these occasions and are therefore limited to a small number of performers: solo songs, partsongs, piano works and chamber music. The true merits of Fanny Mendelssohn/Hensel as a composer remained unrecognised for a long time, and it was not until the late 20th century that her music became an object of real interest.
Fanny Mendelssohn’s only String Quartet (1834) is one of her major works along with the later Piano Trio (1846). It is cast in four movements in an unusual but balanced structure. Instead of the traditional opening allegro in sonata form, it has a free-form and intensely melodic slow movement in the first position. The second movement is a lively scherzo, with a dynamic fugato as its Trio section. The third movement is the song-like Romanza, which incorporates moments of lamentation and tension. The work concludes with an energetic finale that is not far removed from the musical realm of brother Felix, although it is impossible to determine which sibling influenced which.

Andrea Tarrodi

Serenade in Seven Colours

Andrea Tarrodi, who has risen to the forefront among Swedish composers in the 2010s, has often said that she associates music with shapes and colours in her mind. Visual stimuli such as landscapes and even paintings have been important for inspiring her music: “I like to compare [composing] with painting a picture. You start with the background colour, then draw the landscapes and finally the creatures (melodies) that live there.”
Serenade in Seven Colours for winds and percussion (2013) declares its visual input up front, but it also relied on sources of musical inspiration. The first of these was Mozart’s Serenade for winds no. 10 in B flat major, known as the Gran Partita, above all its third movement (Adagio). Another major musical inspiration came from Miles Davis’s and Gil Evans’s album Quiet Nights. Although the music eventually took off in a direction of its own, traces of the above can still be detected.
The work opens calmly, with modal melodies tracing arcs over a regular pulse, similar to the Adagio in Mozart’s Gran Partita (this, by the way, is the music whose oboe melody entranced Salieri in Milos Forman’s film Amadeus). Tarrodi paints a lucid, lyrical Impressionist scene glowing in the many colours of wind instruments. She describes the opening as dark blue and violet, transitioning to almost pure white. A sizzling tremolo field evolves into a rhythmic framework through a quasi-Sibelian suave metamorphosis, whipped up by the xylophone into a minimalist frenzy. The music culminates in what Tarrodi describes as “an explosion of colourful fireworks” and subsides into a final passage that fades into the distance – foggy and cream-coloured in the composer’s mind.

Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart

Violin Concerto no. 2 in D major KV 211

Although Mozart’s reputation as a performing musician derives largely from his superb keyboard skills, he was also an excellent violinist. He began studying the violin with his father Leopold at the age of six, and he was leader of the Salzburg court orchestra from 1769 to 1777. He wrote his five Violin Concertos during his active career as a violinist, the first one in spring 1773 (it was his first concerto of any kind) and the other four in 1775, by which time he had only written one Piano Concerto.
The Violin Concertos show the young Mozart exploring the potential of musical expression in a concertante setting, and like his Piano Concertos they emerged from his hands-on experience with the instrument. The Violin Concertos are extremely idiomatically written, featuring elements that suit the instrument admirably. It is not known whether Mozart wrote them for himself or for another violinist, but he is known to have performed at least some of his Violin Concertos with great success. Mozart’s own solo cadenzas have not survived, and it is possible that he never even wrote them down.
In his first two Violin Concertos, Mozart appears as a perpetuator of tradition rather than as an innovator. In the Concerto in D major KV 211, dated June 1775, the opening movement is stylishly galante and built up of four orchestral sections interspersed with three solo sections, as per then current practice. The slow movement features an elegant aria-like melody reminiscent of Aminta’s aria ‘L’amerò sarò constante’ from the opera Il re pastore (KV 208, 1775) that Mozart completed only a few months before the Concerto. The finale has a title alluding to the French style, ‘Rondeau’, and its rondo theme resembles a minuet. In this movement, the solo violin part is at its liveliest, chirping breezily.

Kimmo Korhonen

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