Starting with her latest success, The Ring of Fire and Love, the volcanic work simultaneously performed in three different countries, Tarkiainen’s tenure will present the world premiere of her Concerto for English Horn Milky Ways.
In great company, with György Ligeti, Sergei Rachmaninoff and Brett Dean, Tarkiainen’s northern landscapes will fill Helsinki Music Centre.
With four fabulous concerts, under the direction of Nicholas Collon, the orchestra will be showcasing the best of Tarkiainen’s music, the exploration of the link between nature and maternal identity.
Outi Tarkiainen's music has a life-affirming power and unfolds in the full range of dynamic extremes.
In ‘The Ring of Fire and Love’, Tarkiainen perfectly exploits the tonal possibilities of the classical orchestra with the involvement of four percussionists, creating a triumphal march around the world.
– Michael Klier, Bachtrack
The classical canon isn’t replete with works about childbirth, probably for obvious reasons. So a welcome dawn shone on Outi Tarkiainen’s Midnight Sun Variations, inspired by the birth of the composer’s son. The piece is about light too: Tarkiainen lives in a remote village in Finnish Lapland and she was also inspired by the Arctic night when she went into labour, the last of the bright summer days fading to an autumn mist.
It’s very beautiful, chains of shimmering percussion setting off a kind of twinkling relay contest, before bigger, thicker lines are drawn by the strings, pulsing almost like a Steve Reich soundscape. The expressive energy of the piece hides its intricate effects: Tarkiainen doesn’t get bogged down by details and her voice comes through strongly.
– Neil Fisher, The Times
Dedicated to Nicholas Daniel’s late mother, the oboist who hypnotised me with his playing and who lost her all too early.
– Outi Tarkiainen
Milky Ways was commissioned by the Finnish Radio, San Francisco Symphony Orchestra and BBC Radio 3.
The US Premiere will take place April 21 with San Francisco Symphony Orchestra and soloist Russ de Luna, under the direction of Cristian Măcelaru.
The fabric of Tarkiainen’s work is the echoing, long-resonating, existential poetry of vast masses. The clear timbres, nature harmonies, spurts and reflections create a floating body of sound. In the final seconds the glittering crystals give way to a bullroarer impression: the wind sweeps over them, not…The end is gripping.
– Susanna Välimäki, Helsingin Sanomat
Listen to her latest album here