This charming disc (containing newly recorded and previously issued works) begins with a suitably brooding if not spectacular Finlandia, and then proceeds from one delight to the next. Outstanding items include: Madetoja's Elegy for Strings, Melartin's Festive March, Rautavaara's Fiddlers, Sallinen's Sunrise Serenade, and two pieces (Prelude and Berceuse) by Järnefelt. The other items have less substance but plenty of tuneful and easygoing appeal. As an advertisement for the attractions of Finnish music beyond Sibelius, this collection serves an admirable purpose, particularly as all of the items are well played and recorded. As has become particularly clear over the past two decades or so, the 20th century musical legacy of Finland isRead more every bit as rich and varied as that of any other country, and is well worth exploring. Here's a fine place to start if you're curious but like to keep things on the light side.
--David Hurwitz, ClassicsToday.com Read less
Works on This Recording
Finlandia, Op. 26by Jean Sibelius Conductor:
Turku Philharmonic Orchestra
Period: Romantic Written: Finland Notes: Composition written: Finland (1899 - 1900).
Sleeping Beauty (Prinsessa Ruusunea), Op. 22: Festive March
Sunrise Serenade, Op. 63
Praeludium: Prelude for Orchestra
Berceuse, "Lullaby": Berceuse
Merikuvia (Sea Pictures): Sea Pictures: Nocturne - Song of the Watch
Finnish Prayer (arr. for trumpet and orchestra): Finnish Prayer
Average Customer Review: ( 2 Customer Reviews )
Nice Finnish AnthologyMay 19, 2013By Henry S. (Springfield, VA)See All My Reviews"Finnish classical music is much more than Jean Sibelius, as this very nice Naxos disk from the mid-1990's attests. To be sure, Sibelius is well represented here with 2 very familiar short works- Finlandia and Valse Triste. They receive fine performances by Finland's Turku Philharmonic Orchestra, but the real attraction of this disk is the rest of the program, which is probably unfamiliar to most listeners. Serenades, romances, marches, wedding music, and dances from a variety of 20th century Finnish composers make up a delightful and instructive program, all of it played with tender loving care by the Turku orchestra, which is a very excellent regional Finnish ensemble. (Note- one selection, Aulis Sallinen's Sunrise Serenade is performed by the equally excellent Finnish Chamber Orchestra). Naxos' sound is solid, perhaps a bit distant in orchestral presence. While none of these works could possibly be the central feature of a major concert program, nevertheless the net result of this CD is a very enjoyable and educational listening experience. Recommended."Report Abuse
Great Nordic MusicJanuary 22, 2013By Paul Hsieh (Orinda, CA)See All My Reviews"Nordic music is not pretending. Composers were all trying to express the very place that they grew up in and the emotional attachment they shared with their fellow countrymen. Although not popularly performed in major venues, they did give us great listening pleasure. Thanks NAXOS for making the effort."Report Abuse