Kokkonen - Symphonies Nos.1 & 2

Ondine: ODE11292

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Kokkonen - Symphonies Nos.1 & 2



Catalogue No:




Release date:

12th Jan 2009




51 minutes


CD (download also available)
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Kokkonen - Symphonies Nos.1 & 2


Symphony No. 1

Symphony No. 2

Opus sonorum

Finnish RSO, Sakari Oramo



(also available to download from $10.00)

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Joonas Kokkonen (1921-1996) is considered "Finland's most significant composer after Sibelius" (American Record Guide). However, he still awaits discovery among many lovers of accessible contemporary music. Sakari Oramo and the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra, unrivaled champions of Finnish late 20th-century music, have taken up this task with a complete Kokkonen symphonies cycle: the benchmark first volume, Symphonies 3 & 4, coupled with Cello Concerto, was unanimously hailed by the press as a 'must-have disc'. On this new release, they perform the first two symphonies, coupled with Opus sonorum for orchestra. Written in the years following Sibelius's death in 1957, these masterpieces reveal Kokkonen's affinity with the music of J.S. Bach and his full exploration of expressive tonal colours.

Joonas Kokkonen: Symphony No. 1

I. Moderato

II. Allegretto

III. Allegro

IV. Adagio

Joonas Kokkonen: Symphony No. 2

I. Adagio non troppo

II. Allegro

III. Andante

IV. Allegro vivace

Joonas Kokkonen: Opus sonorum

I. Moderato - II. Adagio non troppo - III. Allegro non troppo

Gramophone Magazine

February 2009

“Oramo gets playing of real bite and energy in the third movement of the First Symphony, an there is never any doubting his commitment, or that of his players, to Kokkonen's cause.”

The Telegraph

12th February 2009

“For Finnish conductor Sakari Oramo, a man with a yen for reviving neglected composers, Joonas Kokkonen is an important figure. He's the "missing link" between the great Jan Sibelius and a new generation of Finnish composers such as Magnus Lindberg. Frankly, it's hard to imagine a brilliant composer like Lindberg learning much from the earnest, rhythmically four-square, formally predictable Kokkonen. Oramo and the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra give performances which respect the music's craftsmanlike virtues – more's the pity. A bit of bravura might have helped the music to speak.”

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