29, June 2010

Saariaho Portrait

Kaija Saariaho has written Cloud Trio for the Zebra Trio with Ernst Kovacic, Steven Dann and Anssi Karttunen. It was premiered earlier this month at the Båstad Festival in Sweden and will feature in many of the trio’s programmes in the upcoming season, amongst others in a performance at Vienna Konzerthaus in January 2011. Here a short quote from Kaija Saariaho’s programme note: ‘Why Cloud Trio? When composing this piece in the French Alps (Les Arcs), watching the big sky above mountains I realized once again how rich metaphor a natural element can be: it’s state or shape is so recognizable, and yet it is always varied and rich in details.

On September 8 2010 a new clarinet concerto by Kaija Saariaho: D’OM LE VRAI SENS will be premiered at Finlandia Hall, Helsinki with Kari Kriikku, the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra. The FRSO is leading a high profile commissioning consortium joint by the BBC (October 2010), Fundação Casa da Musica, Portugal (December 2010), Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra (January 2011) and Radio France (February 2011) and on each occasion Kari Kriikuu will be the soloist.

The general idea of this piece is based on the famous medieval tapestries called La Dame à la Licorne. (More information can be found on the website of the Musée national du Moyen Âge , Paris, where the tapestries are exhibited). The subject matter is the five senses and the ‘sixth sense’ and the six tapestries give their names to the six parts of the concerto in which the soloist will not remain in the traditional position in front of the orchestra but moves within the concert hall to specific locations defined in the score.