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SIBELIUS AND MYTH

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GEORGE COLERICK discusses Finnish culture and
asks if Sibelius was one of the greatest melodists

 

Finland's classic culture had been submerged through centuries, and many artefacts to be seen in Helsinki are in fact of Viking (Nordic) origin. The non-European Finnish culture went back some 2,500 years, and from the mid-nineteenth century, Elias Lönnrot and others worked to rediscover the best of it, so that the nation could enthuse about its fine language and legends put into written form. Their highly inflected language, in which every vowel is pronounced, adapts well to music and gives their folk style very distinctive features. A typical melody runs along a small range of pitches, so with correspondingly more note repetition, which may have a specially emotive effect...

Copyright © 11 October 2014 George Colerick,
London UK

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JEAN SIBELIUS

FINLAND

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Classical Music Programme Notes for concerts and recordings, by Malcolm Miller