TAPIO TUOMELA (b.1958): Mothers and Daughters.
Catalogue Number: 09K099
Reference: AUL 66156
Description: This opera is a retelling of aspects of the Lemminkäinen legend, specifically those related to the hero's relationships with the many women in his adventures and theirs with each other. An interesting aspect of Tuomela's music is the incorporation of a composed 'folk style' of singing, heard at key points of the opera, consisting of a rough 'ethnic' style of voice production. With its suggestion of the outdoors and primitive cultures this lends an air of archaic authenticity to a story that is essentially a 19th-century compilation. The bulk of the action of the work is portrayed in music that, while recognisably of our time, is neither atonal nor avant garde; some of the work's antecedents seem to be traceable to the strained tonality of the late 19th and early 20th century; elsewhere one is reminded of Lutoslawski, and especially in Tuomela's unexpected and striking orchestral sonorities, of Crumb, with whom he studied. The tense psychological drama, with the characters (all women, apart from Lemminkäinen) discussing and arguing about their feelings and motivations at length, is well conveyed by music of unrelenting, at times almost claustrophobic, tension. 2 CDs. Finnish-English libretto. Jaakko Kortekangas (baritone), Ritva Auvinen, Pia Freund, Taru Valjakka (sopranos), Finnish National Opera Orchestra; John Storgårds.