Works Discography

Einojuhani Rautavaara (1928-2016)

Einojuhani Rautavaara (9.10.1928-27.7.2016) is after Sibelius one of the best known and most frequently performed Finnish composers internationally. Rautavaara was by nature a romantic, even a mystic, as was apparent from the titles of his works: for example Angels and Visitations for orchestra or his double-bass concerto Angel of Dusk. Despite Rautavaara's label of "mysticism" his works cannot be categorized in stylistic terms.

At the age of seventeen Rautavaara began studying the piano and later went on to study musicology at Helsinki University and composition at the Sibelius Academy. From 1951-53 he was a pupil of Aarre Merikanto receiving his diploma in composition in 1957. In 1955 the Koussewitzky Foundation awarded Jean Sibelius a scholarship in honour of his 90th birthday to enable a young Finnish composer of his choice to study in the United States. Sibelius selected Rautavaara who spent two years studying with Vincent Persichetti at the Juilliard School of Music in New York and also took part in the summer courses at Tanglewood given by Roger Sessions and Aaron Copland. In 1957 Rautavaara continued his studies with Wladimir Vogel in Ascona, Switzerland and a year later with Rudolf Petzold in Cologne. Rautavaara has taught and lectured at the Sibelius Academy as the professor of composition. Since 1988 he made his living as a composer in Helsinki.

Rautavaara's earliest works revealed close ties to tradition but also his desire to renew it. They were followed by an extreme constructivist and avant-garde phase (as in the serially organized fourth symphony "Arabescata", 1962) after which Rautavaara turned to hyper-romanticism and finally mysticism. Since the early 1980s, Rautavaara adopted a sort of post-modern musical language in which modern and traditional elements of varying degrees of constructivism or freedom were combined with one another.

Rautavaara composed eight symphonies, the most frequently performed of them being the Angel of Light, his seventh symphony. Symphony No. 8, The Journey was premiered in April 2000 by The Philadelphia Orchestra under Wolfgang Sawallisch. Other important groups of works include concertos for different solo instruments, among them the three piano concertos, two cello concertos, the popular Violin Concerto (1977), the Harp Concerto (2000) and the Clarinet Concerto (2001-02). Rautavaara has also written a large body of chamber music as well as choral and vocal works including All-Night Vigil for a cappella chorus and Missa a cappella. One of Rautavaara's most popular works is Cantus arcticus, concerto for birds and orchestra, in which the straightforward orchestral part is juxtaposed with the sounds of birds recorded by the composer himself. Rautavaara's final orchestral works, published by Boosey & Hawkes, include Manhattan Trilogy (2004), Book of Visions (2005), Before the Icons (2005), and A Tapestry of Life (2007).

Apart form his symphonies (ODE 1145-2Q) and concertos (ODE 1156-2Q), the central pillars of Rautavaara's extensive oeuvre are his operas. With Vincent (1985-87) and The House of the Sun (1990) Rautavaara scored a notable international success. Aleksis Kivi (1995-96) was premiered at the Savonlinna Opera Festival in 1997 and it has been performed in Cosenza, Italy and Minneapolis, U.S.A since then. His final stage work, Rasputin (2001-2003) is an opera about the life of mystic and healer Grigory Rasputin. Rautavaara's first opera, Kaivos (1963), was staged for the first time in Budapest, Hungary, in 2016, soon after the composer's death. A recording of the opera released by Ondine (ODE 1174-2) earned a Grammy nomination in 2012.

More information:
Fennica Gehrman
Boosey & Hawkes
Finnish Music Information Centre
Interview with Einojuhani Rautavaara on the occasion of his 80th birthday (video)

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A Children's Mass (1973)
Adagio Celeste for String Orchestra (2000)
A Finnish Myth (1977)
Aleksis Kivi - Opera in Three Acts (1996)
Anadyomene (Adoration of Aphrodite) (1968)
An Epitaph for Béla Bartók (1986)
Angel of Light, Symphony No. 7, excerpt from 3rd movement, Come un sogno
Angels and Visitations (1978)
Apotheosis (1996)
April Lines, for violin and piano (1970/2006)
A Requiem in Our Time (1953)
A Soldier's Mass (1968)
A Tapestry of Life (2007)
Autumn Gardens (1999)
Ave Maria (1957)
Ave Maria, gratia plena
Avuksihuutopsalmi (Psalm of Invocation) (1972)
Balada for tenor, mixed choir and orchestra
Ballad for Harp and Strings (1973/1981)
Before the Icons (1955/2005)
Book of Visions (2005)
Canción de nuestro tiempo (Song of Our Time)
Canticum Mariae Virginis (1978)
Canto I (1960)
Canto II (1961)
Canto III (1972)
Canto IV (1992)
Into the Heart of Light (Canto V) for string orchestra
Children's Mass (Lapsimessu) for children's choir and string orchestra (1973)
Concerto for Birds and Orchestra "Cantus Arcticus" (1972)
Concerto for Cello and Orchestra No. 1 (1968)
Concerto for Cello and Orchestra No. 2 "Towards the Horizon" (2008-09)
Concerto for Clarinet and Orchestra (2001)
Concerto for Double Bass and Orchestra "Angel of Dusk" (1980)
Concerto for Flute and Orchestra "Dances with the Winds" (1975)
Concerto for Harp and Orchestra (2000)
Concerto for Organ, Brass Quintet and Symphonic Wind Orchestra "Annunciations" (1977)
Concerto for Percussion and Orchestra "Incantations" (2008)
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 1 (1969)
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 2 (1989)
Concerto for Piano and Orchestra No. 3 "Gift of Dreams" (1998)
Concerto for Violin and Orchestra (1977)
Credo (1972)
Deux Sérénades (2016/18) for violin and orchestra (completed by Kalevi Aho)
Die erste Elegie (The First Elegy)
Die Liebenden (The Lovers) (1958-59/1964)
Die Liebenden - Song cycle for voice and string quintet (1959/arr. 2000)
Dithyrambos, for violin and piano (1970)
Divertimento (1953)
Ehtoohymni (Evening Hymn) (1972)
Einojuhani Rautavaara in conversation with Vladimir Ashkenazy
Elämän kirja (A Book of Life) (1972)
Etudes, Op. 42
Evening Hymn
Fantasia (2015) for violin and orchestra
Four songs from the opera Rasputin for mixed choir and orchestra
F√ľnf Sonette an Orpheus (Five Sonnets to Orpheus) (1955-56/1960)
Garden of Spaces
Guds väg (God's Way) (1964/2003)
Halavan himmeän alla (In the Shade of the Willow) (1998)
Hallin Janne (Janne of Halli) (1973)
Hammarskjöld-fragment (Hammarskjöld Fragment) (1975)
Herran Rukous (The Lord's Prayer) (1973)
Hommage à Kodály Zoltán (1982)
Hommage à Liszt Férenc (1989)
Hymnus (1998) for trumpet and organ
Icons, Op. 6
Iltarukous (Evening Prayer) (1953)
Independence Fanfare (1992)
In the Beginning (2015)
Isontalon Antti ja Rannanjärvi (Antti Isotalo and Rannanjärvi) (1973)
Joulun virsi (Christmas Hymn) for male choir (1953)
Joulun virsi (Christmas Hymn) for mixed choir (1953/1978/1995)
Kaivos (The Mine) - Opera in Three Acts (1962)
Kaksi psalmia (Two Psalms) for male choir (1968/1971)
Kaksi psalmia (Two Psalms) for mixed choir (1968)
Katedralen (The Cathedral)
Kettu ja sairas kukko (The Fox and the Sick Cockerel) (1975)
Lauluja (The Singer) (1956)
Legenda (Legend) (1985)
Lehdet lehtiä (Leaves are Leaves) (1985)
Lintukoto (Isle of Bliss) (1995)
Lorca Suite (1973)
Lorulei (1973)
Lost Landscapes (2005/15), version for violin and orchestra
Lost Landscapes, for violin and piano (2005)
Ludus verbalis
Lähtö (Departure)
Magnificat (1979)
Manhattan Trilogy (2004)
Marjatan jouluvirsi (Marjatta's Christmas Hymn) (1995)
Marjatta matala neiti (Marjatta the Lowly Maiden) - A Finnish Mystery Play in One Act (1977)
Missa a cappella
Missa Duodecafonica (1963)
Missa Duodecafonica (1963)
Modificata (1957/2003)
Morsian (The Bride)
Nattvarden (Communion) (1963)
Neljä laulua Aleksis Kiven runoihin (Four Songs to Poems by Aleksis Kivi) (1998/2005)
Neljä romanssia oopperasta Rasputin (Four Romances from the Opera Rasputin) (2003/2006)
Neljä serenadia (Four Serenades) (1978)
Nirvana Dharma
Notturno e danza, for violin and piano (1993)
Och glädjen den dansar (With the Joy We Go Dancing)
Octet for Winds (1962)
On the Last Frontier
Ostrobothnian Polska (1993)
Our Joyful'st Feast
Pelimannit (The Fiddlers), Op. 1 (1952)
Pelimannit (The Fiddlers), Suite for piano based on traditional Finnish polska tunes for the fiddle (1952)
Playgrounds for Angels (1981)
Polska, Variations on a Folk Tune from Rantasalmi for two Cellos and Piano (1977) (both cello parts played by Tanja Tetzlaff)
Praktisch Deutsch
Psalm of Invocation
Psalm of Invocation (1972)
Puusepän poika (The Carpenter's Son) (1975)
Rakkaus ei koskaan häviä (Charity Never Faileth) (1983)
Rasputin - Opera in Three Acts (2003)
Rautavaara 90th Anniversary Sampler
Regular Sets of Elements in a Semi-Regular Situation (1971)
Rub√°iy√°t for baritone and orchestra
Sommarnatten (Summer Night)
Sonata for Cello and Piano No. 1 (1972-73/2001)
Sonata for Cello and Piano No. 2 (1991)
Sonata for Cello Solo (1969)
Sonata No. 1, Op. 50 "Christus und die Fischer"
Sonata No. 2, Op. 64 "The Fire Sermon"
Song of My Heart
String Quartet No. 1 (1952)
String Quartet No. 2 (1958)
String Quintet (1997) "Unknown Heavens"
Suite de Lorca (1973)
Suite for Strings (1952)
Summer Thoughts, for violin and piano (1972/2008)
Syksy virran suussa (Autumn at the Rivermouth) (1965/1995)
Symphony No. 1 (1955-56/1988)
Symphony No. 1 (1956/1988/2003)
Symphony No. 2 (1957/1984)
Symphony No. 3 (1961)
Symphony No. 4 "Arabescata" (1962)
Symphony No. 5 (1986)
Symphony No. 6 "Vincentiana" (1992)
Symphony No. 7 "Angel of Light" (1994)
Symphony No. 8 "The Journey" (1999)
Tarantar√° (1976) for Solotrumpet
The House of the Sun - Opera in Two Acts
The Myth of Sampo - Choral Opera in One Act
Thomas - Opera in Three Acts
Three Songs from the Opera Aleksis Kivi (1997)
Three Sonnets of Shakespeare (1951/2005)
True & False Unicorn
Two Preludes and Fugues for cello and piano (1955)
Two Preludes of T.S. Eliot (1956/1967)
Two Psalms (1968)
Variétude, for solo violin (1974)
Viatonten valssi (Waltz of the Innocents) (1973/1982)
Vigilia (All-night vigil for the feast of St John the Forerunner), for mixed choir and soloists (1996)
Vincent - Opera in Three Acts
Wenn sich die Welt auftut (1996)
full discography

Discography (extract)

Leif Segerstam 80 Years

(Digital Album)

Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra

Turku Philharmonic Orchestra

Danish National Radio Symphony Orchestra

Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra

ODE 1470-2

Released 05/2024

more info & buy

Einojuhani Rautavaara

Lost Landscapes

(Works for violin and orchestra)

Simone Lamsma, violin

Malmö Symphony Orchestra

Robert Trevino, conductor

ODE 1405-2

Released 04/2022

more info & buy

Einojuhani Rautavaara

90th Anniversary Edition including 2 CDs & Catalogue

Harp Concerto, Symphony No. 8

& Sampler with various artists and orchestras

Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra

Marielle Nordmann, harp

Leif Segerstam, conductor


Released 09/2018

more info & buy


Works for Cello and Piano

Tanja Tetzlaff, cello

Gunilla Süssmann, cello

ODE 1310-2

Released 02/2018

more info & buy

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