KAIJA SAARIAHO (b.1952): L'Amour de loin
Catalogue Number: 10L097
Label: Harmonia Mundi
Reference: HMC 801937.38
Description: "A haunting and resonant work, L'amour de loin, the most important offering of this summer's ambitious Salzburg Festival, is an often transfixing and utterly distinguished work. Idealized love is a well-worn theme, but Mr. Maalouf has found a fresh way to revisit it. Mr. Maalouf's words invite music, and Ms. Saariaho has provided a lushly beautiful score... Her harmonic language is tonally grounded, with frequent use of sustained low pedal tones, but not tonal. Bits of dissonance, piercing overtones and gently jarring electronic sound spike the undulant harmonies, but so subtly that the overall aural impression is of beguiling consonance. Her evocations of the troubadour songs, with medieval modal harmony and fragments of elegiac tunes, are marvelous." - The New York Times (Salzburg premiere in 2000). 2 CDs. French-English libretto. Daniel Belcher (tenor), Ekaterina Lekhina (soprano), Marie-Ange Todorovitch (mezzo), Berlin Radio Choir, Deutsches-Symphonie Orchester Berlin; Kent Nagano. SACD hybrid.