Sibelius: Luonnotar Orchestral Songs

( 1 )

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
Finnish soprano Soile Isokoski's first recording was a lovely and intimate recital of Finnish songs with pianist Marita Viitasalo. Her second recording was much more ambitious -- a full disc of Strauss' orchestral songs closing with the "Vier letzte Lieder" accompanied by Marek Janowski leading the Berliner Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester -- and much more successful -- it won a Gramophone award in 2002. After that, Isokoski released superb discs of Mozart arias and Wolf lieder along with heartfelt recitals of hymns in Finnish and Finnish sacred songs. Finally, in 2006, she released a disc of the music she was born and trained to sing: "Luonnotar" and other orchestral songs by...
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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - James Leonard
Finnish soprano Soile Isokoski's first recording was a lovely and intimate recital of Finnish songs with pianist Marita Viitasalo. Her second recording was much more ambitious -- a full disc of Strauss' orchestral songs closing with the "Vier letzte Lieder" accompanied by Marek Janowski leading the Berliner Rundfunk-Sinfonie-Orchester -- and much more successful -- it won a Gramophone award in 2002. After that, Isokoski released superb discs of Mozart arias and Wolf lieder along with heartfelt recitals of hymns in Finnish and Finnish sacred songs. Finally, in 2006, she released a disc of the music she was born and trained to sing: "Luonnotar" and other orchestral songs by the greatest Finnish composer of all time: Jean Sibelius. It is a wholly magnificent achievement. Isokoski has a pure soprano voice with seemingly no upper edge and apparently no technical limit -- even in "Luonnotar," her voice soars effortlessly over the orchestral accompaniement of Leif Segerstam and the Helsinki Philharmonic. If this disc has a catch, it's that not all the orchestrations are by Sibelius; some were done by other hands, including those of Jussi Jalas, his conducting son-in-law. The non-Sibelius orchestrations are quite lush, lusher perhaps than Sibelius himself would have done, but with touches -- woodwinds in thirds against high harp arpeggios, for example -- the master would have recognized as his own. Do the non-Sibelius orchestrated songs sound like Sibelius? No, not quite. They sound more romantic and even more sensual. Still, with the awesome beauty of Isokoski's performances along with the deft nuances of Segerstam and the Helsinki's accompaniments, this disc is never less than completely convincing. Ondine's super audio sound is thoroughly transparent -- nothing exists except the music.
BBC Music Magazine
[2007 Disc of the Year] The music could not have found a better champion than Finnish soprano Soile Isokoski.... A Sibelian essential.
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Product Details

  • Release Date: 6/27/2006
  • Label: Ondine
  • UPC: 761195108055
  • Catalog Number: 1080
  • Sales rank: 37,348

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 The Echo Nymph (Kaiutar), somg for voice & piano, Op. 72/4 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (3:12)
  2. 2 Luonnotar (The Spirit of Nature), tone poem for voice & orchestra, Op. 70 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (8:53)
  3. 3 But my Bird is Long in Homing (Men min fågel märks dock icke), song for voice & piano, Op. 36/2 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (2:51)
  4. 4 Sigh, sedges, sigh (Säv, säv, susa), song for voice & piano, Op. 36/4 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (2:37)
  5. 5 The Diamond on the March Snow (Demanton på marssnön), song for voice & piano, Op. 36/6 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (2:41)
  6. 6 Spring is flying (Våren flyktar hastigt) song for voice & piano, Op. 13/4 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (1:39)
  7. 7 'Neath the fir trees (Under strandens granar), song for voice & piano, Op. 13/1 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (5:15)
  8. 8 The First Kiss (Den förste kyssen, II), song for voice & piano, Op. 37/1 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (2:03)
  9. 9 Sunrise (Soluppgång), song for voice & piano, Op. 37/3 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (2:21)
  10. 10 Was it a dream? (Var det en dröm), song for voice & piano, Op. 37/4 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (2:27)
  11. 11 Autumn Evening (Höstkväll), for voice & piano (or orchestra), Op. 38/1 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (4:59)
  12. 12 On A Balcony by the Sea (På verandan vid havet), for voice & piano (or orchestra), Op. 38/2 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (3:44)
  13. 13 Arioso, for voice & orchestra, Op. 3 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (4:42)
  14. 14 To Evening (Illalle), song for voice & piano, Op. 17/6 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (1:26)
  15. 15 Driftwood (Lastu Lainehilla), song for voice & piano, Op. 17/7 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (1:03)
  16. 16 Row, row duck (Souda, souda, sinisorsa), for voice & piano - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (1:22)
  17. 17 And I Questioned No Further (Se'n har jag ej frågat mera), song for voice & piano (or orchestra), Op. 17/1 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (2:47)
  18. 18 Dragon-Fly (En slända), song for voice & piano, Op. 17/5 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (4:06)
  19. 19 Duke Magnus (Hertig Magnus), song for voice & piano, Op. 57/6 - Leif Segerstam & Jean Sibelius (3:17)
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Album Credits

Performance Credits
Soile Isokoski Primary Artist
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Soile Isokoski masters another genre

    Finnish soprano Soile Isokoski has graced the concert and opera stage as a penultimate interpreter of the works of Strauss, Mozart, and Wolf, giving evidence of one of the rare voices that can soar over huge orchestras and maintains a tone of glowing beauty. Here she turns that focus to the songs of Jean Sibelius and the result is a CD collection that should gain her wide, glowing attention. In collaboration with Leif Segerstam conducting the Helsinki Philharmonic Orchestra Isokoski sings Sibelius' works for voice and orchestra with penultimate ease and beauty of tone and phrasing. Hers is a voice not only of lustrous timbre but one of great interpretative and technical intelligence. The recital includes some Sibelius songs written for voice and piano and here the orchestrations by such composers as Jussi Jalas are a bit thicker and less sensitive than the majority of the songs using Sibelius' own orchestration. But there is not a weak band on this CD. The songs have a beauty that is suggestive of Richard Strauss and Gustav Mahler without being imitative. Isosoki simply overwhelms with her interpretations. The sound as engineered by Ondine is stunning. This is a recording that should garner prizes when it comes to Grammy Awards. Highly Recommended. Grady Harp

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews