HELIjaKEEL Saariaho Festival
MIRRORS. Kaija Saariaho, Arvo Pärt
13.02.2016 at 5 pm Kanuti Gildi SAAL, Tallinn
The 2015-2016 season of HELIjaKEEL (SOUNDandLANGUAGE) led by Kammermuusikud, in addition to its usual mandate of juxtaposing music and poetry, focuses more on different musical styles.
The opening concert of the HELIjaKEEL Saariaho Festival – MIRRORS will feature the music by Arvo Pärt and Kaija Saariaho. Although the styles of these two composers are different, it is also possible to find unifying elements in their music.
© Eric Marinitsch / Arvo Pärdi Keskus
© Priska Ketterer
Kaija Saariaho: Il Pleut (1986)
Arvo Pärt: Scala cromatica (2007)
Kaija Saariaho: Mirrors (1997)
Arvo Pärt: Spiegel im Spiegel (1978/2005)
Arvo Pärt: Von Angesicht zu Angesicht (2005)
Kaija Saariaho: Iltarukous (2000)
Arvo Pärt: Estonian Lullaby (2002)
Arvo Pärt: Christmas Lullaby (2002)
Arvo Pärt: Vater unser (2005/2011)
Kaija Saariaho: Jardin Secret II (2006)
Arvo Pärt: Summa (1977/1991)
Performers: Arianna Savall (soprano, Spain), Camilla Hoitenga (flute, USA), Vox Clamantis, Toomas Vavilov (clarinet), Olga Voronova (violin), Laur Eensalu (viola), Leho Karin (cello), Andres Kungla (double bass), Diana Liiv (piano), Ene Nael (harpsichord), Tammo Sumera (electronics)
Kaija Saariaho is a prominent member of a group of Finnish composers and performers who are now, in mid-career, making a worldwide impact. She studied at the Sibelius Academy and continued her studies in Freiburg and from 1982, at the IRCAM research institute in Paris – the city which has been most of the time her home ever since. At IRCAM, Saariaho developed techniques of computer-assisted composition and acquired fluency in working on tape and with live electronics. Before coming to work at IRCAM, Saariaho learned to know the French ‘spectralist’ composers, whose techniques are based on computer analysis of the sound-spectrum. This analytical approach inspired her to develop her own method for creating harmonic structures, as well as the detailed notation using harmonics, microtonaly and detailed continuum of sound extending from pure tone to unpitched noise. (retrieved from www.saariaho.org)
However paradoxical it might be, silence seems to be the essential purpose of Arvo Pärt’s music: he does not consider the notes or musical sounds as the essence of music. For him, the sounds only point towards the essential, in the same way as words always only serve as a hint towards something more. The essential will always remain hidden between the sounds. Often, Pärt’s creative method is compared with fasting, with voluntary asceticism: for him, reduction is far more important than enlargement. He has always been frugal with his means of expression, even parsimonious – and yet his music is benevolent. (Toomas Siitan, www.arvopart.ee)
Singer and harpist Arianna Savall (Spain) was born in Basle into a family of Catalan musicians. 2002 saw her debut in the Barcelona opera house in a production of Claudio Monteverdi’s Orfeo directed by her father Jordi Savall, in which she took the role of Eurydice. Critics praised the production as one of the most beautiful and magical versions of Orfeo. Her passion for early music and for improvisation has led her to the other extreme: contemporary music. In June 2006 she performed as a singer in the work by Helena Tulve Lijnen in Tallinn, which was also later recorded by ECM with the group Nyyd Ensemble, conducted by Olari Elts, with whom she also performed at the Rennes Opera, singing Quatre Instants by K. Saariaho. She has undertaken several projects with Helena Tulve which premiered at the Monaco Opera with Vox Clamantis with Jaan-Eik Tulve conducting. In 2008 she sang L’abbé Agathon by Arvo Pärt with the Amsterdam Cello Octet. In 2010, she performed at several festivals dedicated to the music of Arvo Pärt, including the Nargen Festival (Estonia), which celebrated the 75th birthday of the Estonian composer.
It is as if the beauty of Arianna’s voice were truly the voice of a fairy. (El 9 Nou, MMVV 2010, M. Rius) The critics also refer to her as The fairy of the harp. (retrieved from www.ariannasavall.com)
Flutist Camilla Hoitenga (USA) is at home on stages all over the world. Her repertoire ranges from pre-Bach to post-Stockhausen, from concertos to music for flute alone from state-of-the art pieces for live video and electronics and interdisciplinary projects. Her recordings, in particular those with Kaija Saariaho, have won awards in France, Great Britain and in North America. She has performed concertos written for her by composers such as Kaija Saariaho, Péter Köszeghy, Ken-Ichiro Kobayashi and Raminta Serksnyte and worked with conductors like Marin Alsop, Jukka-Pekka Saraste, Susanna Mälkki, Alan Gilbert and Vladimir Jurowski in concert halls and important festivals all over the world. A frequent guest in Japan, and with a great interest in Japanese culture, she has also premiered dozens of pieces written for her by Japanese composers. (retrieved from www.hoitenga.com)