DCD34156-CD

Solitudes: Baltic Reflections

No one knows quite when tango was established in Finland, but the style has a long history there – still little known to outsiders – and combines rhythmic interest and yearning melody with a distinctively Nordic melancholy. In this ingeniously curated programme, two Finnish tangos from the 1950s and a tango-based work by Finnish classical composer Aulis Sallinen are woven into a bold tapestry of music from the Eastern Baltic seaboard. Longing, sadness, and a heightened sense of nature infuse all of these works, which also reveal intriguing stylistic connections: the rocking accompaniment of Sibelius’s Einsames Lied seems to prefigure the ‘Baltic minimalism’ of Vasks, Pärt and Zita Bružaitė, while Olli Mustonen’s Toccata alternates rhythmic verve with a rich vein of reflective memory. These original compositions are complemented by Robert McFall’s own sensitive arrangements for a core McFall’s line-up of five strings and piano, and the programme culminates in a truly unique version of Sibelius’s famous Finlandia Hymn.

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