Kronberg Academy

Friday 14.2.2020 19.00 season concert 4
From 25/19/11 € Espoo Cultural Centre
Platinum 2020-2021 Gold 2020-2021
Friday 14.2.2020 19.00 From 25/19/11 € Espoo Cultural Centre
Platinum 2020-2021 Gold 2020-2021

The Tapiola Sinfonietta embarks on a collaboration with the world’s most distinguished academy for string instruments, Kronberg Academy in Germany. The soloists here are Fumika Mohri, winner of the Seoul International Music Competition 2012, and Timothy Ridout, winner of the Lionel Tertis Viola Competition. The programme of rare gems is conducted by Jonathan Bloxham.

YouTube premiere on 14th May 2020 at 7 pm on Tapiola Sinfonietta´s YouTube channel.

“Kronberg Academy professional study programme is designed for an elite group of young gifted musicians. What makes Kronberg Academy programme distinctive and special is the exeptional team of professors and the opportunity to work with some of the world´s finest musicians.” 

The concert ends apx. 8.55 pm




Benjamin Britten

Prelude and Fugue for string orchestra op. 29

Benjamin Britten completed his Prelude and Fugue in 1943 as a birthday present for the 10th anniversary of the Boyd Neel String Orchestra. Prelude and Fugue for string orchestra has an exquisitely executed string texture and contrapuntal finesse that testifies to the technical confidence of the then 29-year-old Britten.

The work opens with an intense ‘Prelude’ with a prominent high-flying violin solo. The ‘Fugue’ emerges from the depths of the bass register in pianissimo and rises from instrument to instrument as new voices join in. The movement grows into a vivacious and energetic texture with harmonically dense contrapuntal writing. At its height, the texture has 18 parts going on, each musician being given an independent part. The culmination of the fugue is followed by a coda harking back to the heavier, intense melodic writing of the Prelude but concluding in a brisk accelerando.

Shortened from Kimmo Korhonen's work presentation
Translation: Jaakko Mäntyjärvi

Aram Hatšaturjan

Concerto-Rhapsody for violin and orchestra

Aram Khachaturian from Armenia was one of the most famous composers in the multi-cultural Soviet Union. His best works demonstrate a merger of influences from Armenian folk music and the Western tradition of classical music.

In addition to three concertos proper, Khachaturian wrote single-movement Concerto-Rhapsodies for violin, cello and piano in the 1960s. The first of these, for violin, was completed in 1961 for violinist Leonid Kogan. The title refers to the fact that Khachaturian here abandoned the three-movement concerto form and created a freer, ‘rhapsodic’ structure.

After a powerful orchestral outburst, the violin enters with a searing, intense solo, and the first half of the work is dominated by a sombre mood with soaring melodic lines. The second main section is faster and rhythmically vibrant. The darker tones of the opening return, but after a grand culmination the work progresses to a liberating, scintillating virtuoso conclusion.

Shortened from Kimmo Korhonen's work presentation
Translation: Jaakko Mäntyjärvi

Bohuslav Martinů

Rhapsody-Concerto for viola and orchestra

Czech composer Bohuslav Martinů was an expatriate from 1923 for the rest of his life but retained strong mental ties to his homeland. Czech folk music remained of central importance amidst his numerous other influences. But it was Martinů’s growing interest in early music that engendered a Neo-Baroque vein in his works, becoming a dominant feature in his extensive catalogue.

Martinů completed his Rhapsody-Concerto for viola and orchestra in 1953, at a time when he was moving from Neo-Baroque towards a more Romantic late style. Unlike conventional concertos, this work only has two movements, but each of these contain sections in various tempos. Yet the form of the work is not as ‘rhapsodic’ as the title claims.

The first movement begins with a calm, melodic opening statement whose profile and rhythms are recognisable as typical for Martinů, including a flirting between major and minor that he derived from Czech folk music. The mood here is mainly lyrical and nostalgically tranquil, but is spiced up by a rhythmic dance-like element.

The second movement is initially more sombre, even melancholic as the viola enters. A solo passage (quasi cadenza) leads into a faster section with energetic figures for the viola. The kinetic energy subsides in a short solo passage, and the work concludes quietly.

Shortened from Kimmo Korhonen's work presentation
Translation: Jaakko Mäntyjärvi

Benjamin Britten

Concerto for Violin, Viola and Orchestra

Although a composer as prominent as W.A. Mozart wrote a concerto for violin and viola (Sinfonia Concertante), rather few concertos for this combination have been written since then. While Britten wrote the work during his second year of studies at the Royal College of Music in London in 1932, it was not premiered until 1997, more than 20 years after his death.

The concerto is in three movements. The first movement is built on a theme introduced by the horn. In this virtuoso movement, the soloists stick together, and even their individual utterances often form part of a dialogue between them. In the second movement, subtitled ‘Rhapsodia’, both soloists introduce a meditative theme; towards the end, they stubbornly hang on to their quaver motif in face of the full orchestra. The timpani bridges the gap from the slow movement to the playful finale, which after introducing a dance-like second subject and a wild orchestral intermezzo is interrupted by a reminiscence from the first movement. The work concludes with an unhurried revisitation of the themes of the concerto in a different light.

Shortened from Atte Kilpeläinen's work presentation
Translation: Jaakko Mäntyjärvi

after-concert session


Interview of Jonathan Bloxham, Fumika Mohri and Timothy Ridout.

Hosted by the Friends of Tapiola Sinfonietta.

Free admission. Welcome!



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