Monday, 31 March 2014

Re-scoring Min Gud

Monday the 31th of March. Today there would have been a stage-rehearsal of Bus number 13 at Tampere Hall, but sadly didn’t have time to go there. I just understood yesterday evening, that in case I want to get my song cycle for choir “Min Gud” printed, it would be the best to get it printed this week, so that my parents can bring the published notes from Helsinki by car next Saturday when they are coming to watch Bus number 13 (rather than paying post fees). But that means I have to send in the score to the publishing company Music Finland by Wednesday! So I am quite in a hurry.

I was in the composition studio almost all day working on rescoring the piece. I wrote Min Gud (to the text of Psalm 22) originally for women’s choir in 2010, but Markus Yli-Jokipii said to me last week “It’s too good a piece for only existing for women’s choir”, so now I’m rescoring the 8 voiced women’s choir piece (SSSSAAAA) for a 10 voiced mixed choir (SSSAAATTBB).

Re-scoring Min Gud from 8 voiced women's choir to...

...10 voiced mixed choir.

It has been rather fun day, working with the piece. Although it’s already 4 years old, I still really like the piece. Many composers always tell me about how they look at their old pieces and think “oh what crap I wrote back then!”. Well, I notice that I haven’t always written things in the most “efficient” way, but still I’m fond also of most of my old pieces as well. It’s like having children, maybe they aren’t all perfect, but you like them with all their imperfection and there is no use in being ashamed of them. I’m looking forward to finally hearing Min Gud being performed at my composition concert on the 14th of May!

Sunday, 30 March 2014

Choir Practice

Still Sunday the 30th of March. After conducting class ended I went home at about 17 hours thinking I would have a Skype-meeting with the composer society Korvat Auki. But I called my friend Dante Thelestam, who told me the meeting had been cancelled, so one hour free time, yippee!

At 18.00 I went to church, and after mass we had choir practise. We are going to record all the songs we sing in the English mass and make a CD of it in the near future. So we had an extra practise after mass for that reason.

I was happy we today for the first time had an "official" choir conductor Zita Szekely, who took responsibility of training us and keeping order in the choir. I don’t have time nor energy to be anything else than a passive choir member right now. The practise went quite okay, and Zita was relived, because she told me the practise the day before (which I didn't attend), had been a catastrophe! So she had hardly slept all last night as she was so worried about the coming CD, but now she was a bit calmer, because today’s practise went so much better.

It was nice meeting Zita, she was all eager about my music studies and was so sad about that she can’t come to next Sundays concert with my song cycle Dagbok. She also told me her brother works as a professional bass player in a orchestra in Hungary.

I’m quite surprised, I got home now at 22 o’clock, but I don’t even feel very tired! Maybe because it has simply been such a awesome weekend! 

Conducting Class Day 2

Sunday the 30th of March. After a good night sleep I felt much better and easier about the conducting course staring at 10 AM.

The first hours students were conducting Mozart, so I was practising to conduct my piece in an other room. Being a pianist I have very rarely played in an orchestra, which is of course a disadvantage when conducting. But my sister Jacintha as a flutist has sat in many orchestras. She has for instance been working for two years as a flutist in the 4 hour musical “Christina från Duvemåla” at Svenska Teatern (The Swedish Theatre) in Helsinki, so she sat and played about 2-4 times a week throughout the 4 hour performance for two years. Also while studying at the Sibelius Academy she has experienced playing in an orchestra conducted by various conductors, such as for instance Hannu Lintu, Atso Almila, Susanna Mälkki and Santtu-Matias Rouvali. So Jacintha was giving me very good advice on what to improve. She emphasized that technique actually doesn’t matter as much as feeling the music inside of you and expressing the feeling with your whole body language.

Me conducting my song cycle Dagbok with my sister Jacintha as soprano.
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. Photo by Simiam Ghan

Today I felt my conducting went much better than yesterday.  (But when I afterwards looked at the video I could hardly see any difference… But at least it felt better!) Having written in large circles in my score for easier seeing whom to show in where made it much easier for me to conduct, so I actually managed today much more to look up at my musicians (and not only have all my attention in the score like yesterday). And then I also noticed that the musicians actually looked at me as well for knowing when to come in. (That made me wonder even more how the orchestra had been able to sound so okay yesterday, considering I forgot to show in almost everybody, so they just had to rely on their own counting.)

Finally remembering to look up at my musicians!
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. Photo by Simiam Ghan

Showing in my sister Jacintha in the movement Stigar in my song cycle Dagbok
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. Photo by Simiam Ghan

Showing the musicians to play softer. My sister Jacintha observing my conducting.
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. Photo by Simiam Ghan

The orchestra had still quite much problems with playing in tune. As an inexperienced conductor I couldn’t really say why that was. There are many options, 1. The harmonies are difficult to get to sound good together (which would be the composers = my fault), 2. The musicians don’t know what to listen for, which means they have to hear the piece a few more times and play it through, and this will help getting in tune by it self throughout time, 3. The musicians are simply not listening and not paying attention to their tune, 4. The musicians haven’t practised and are simply playing out of tune. But to be able to tell which of these options it is, is actually quite hard. And of course everyone suspects always case number 1 to be the reason (while the composer often suspects case number 4…). But there is still next weeks practise before the concert, so we will see what will happen with the tune.

Conducting a big forte in the last movement of my song cycle Dagbok.
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. Photo by Simiam Ghan

After the musicians had left at 15 o’clock, Juha Törmä gave us all conductors a few advices:
1. Think about your practise strategy before next weekend’s sessions with the orchestra, so that you can rehearse the orchestra as efficiently as possible.
2. Remember to use your voice so that even the clarinets and bassoons in the last row can hear you.

Juha Törmä showing me how to improve my beat.
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. Photo by Simiam Ghan

To me Juha Törma said
Considering your freepulsative fourth movement “Stigar”: Remember always to breath everything you show you musicians. Use both hands for showing people in, as you are not conducting beats as it is freepulsative. If you use both hands, you control the musicians much better. But most practically for the musicians would be if you would have numbers in your freepulsative movement, so that you can show to the musicians where you are with you fingers. And remember that you always breath in a quartertone before showing in a musician, so that the winds (and everyone else) have time to take a breath before they play.
Juha Tömä waning me about lifting my elbow too much.
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. Photo by Simiam Ghan

In the last movement “Jag vill” your hand wrist is jumping too much. In the beginning it was a bit better. Don’t bounce your hand, show it instead with a intensive movement. Begin the movement slightly more active. Show also the last beat of the piece like if you were on your way to a first beat which you just don’t beat. Remember to show in your musicians and to take care of all of them. Your tempo is varying much and your first beat is always a bit too late, as it has a longer way to travel, which you don’t seem to take into consideration. So that makes the orchestra slow down a bit the whole time, as your first beat is always a bit late. Pay attention so that your tempo keeps throughout the piece (if you want it that way).

Juha Tömä finally somewhat pleased with the result.
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. Photo by Simiam Ghan

And here are a few more comments Törmä said to the other students:
Student 1 conducting Mozart
It’s important that the orchestra get’s information about the next beat before you have beaten it. It’s difficult for the musician to phrase the music if you the whole time stop your beat slightly, you should instead show us the music and how it is phrased. It should the whole time be moving towards the next beat. If you jump up from the bottom of a beat it looks like you are trying to make an accelerando (trying to speed up). The preparing beat is one of the most important things you have to practise (a lot), learn to breath with you preparing beat.

Student 2 conducting Mozart
You started very well, but a bit further on you would need a bit more legato. Try with your movement to make an as beautiful legato as possible. Yesterday you conducted everything only from the stick and it was too much (too little body language), but today it’s too little conducted by the stick. In Cherubino only the first note is forte and the rest of the bar is piano, so just put much less speed in the beat after the first beat. And you could get the orchestra better to follow you if your movement would be more round.

Student 3 conducting Mozart and Damström’s Dagbok
Although you are moving your arms, the end of the stick is hardly moving. Make sure the stick is like an extension of your hand, which helps us read your hands better. You should try to provoke legato with your hands, so don’t bounce too much away from the beat. Don’t only stare at the notes. Practise until next week your beat so that your movement is more even. Practise how you prepare a beat, so that once again the winds can breath with your beat. As a conductor you constantly have to prepare.

In Damström you beat are quite unclear, so maybe a bit clearer movement from side to side so that they know what beat you are at. If your nuance can’t be smaller in you right hand then you can use your left hand for showing a smaller nuance. Don’t turn too much away from the cellos (when you show in the singer) because the cellos can’t any more see you beat, especially as you conduct with your left hand. Practise before next week to beat different nuances (from forte to piano) together with a metronome so that you keep exact rhythm. 

Tuomas Kettunen conducting my song cycle Dagbok.
Sunday 30.3.2014 at Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course. © C.Damström

Saturday, 29 March 2014

Conducting Class Day 1

Saturday March 29th. I slept for about 2 hours last night. Not feeling quite on top of the world I got up for the conducting course organized by Pirkanmaan Pinna beginnig at 10 AM.

Pirkanmaan Pinna is a organization, founded in 2011 by Janne Vanonen, Anna-Leena Lumme and Tanja Karjalainen, that organizes private conducting courses, mainly in Tampere. This course I am now attending is two weekends long (7 hours per day, 4 days), we have two teachers, the theme is vocal music/opera and it costs 400 euros. The orchestrated version of my song cycle Dagbok will be conducted by us conductor students and performed at the final concert next weekend! Other repertoire during the course is extracts from Morzart’s Cosí fan tutte  and Don Giovanni. This weekend our teacher is Juha Törmä. He is very much into technique and similar issues.

Pirkanmaan Pinna has paid an orchestra for the whole course, and each of us conductor students gets to conduct for about 20 minutes per day. Our teacher can interrupt and suggest how we could get things to sound better etc. All sessions are video recorded and after the musicians have left, all conductors watch the videos together with the teacher, who gives comments for about 12 minutes per person. This time we were nine conductor students.

Jacintha Damström reading the score of Dagbok and a part of the orchestra.
Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course 29.3.2014. ©C.Damström

All students were free to conduct whichever pieces they wanted. I am not interested in conducting anything else than my own piece Dagbok, so that the orchestra for sure will know it at the concert. But I was also very happy about that a few other students had chosen to conduct parts of my song cycle! Janne Vanonen, Tuomas Kettunen and Hannes Merisaari have taken on the brave task of conducting something you can’t listen to from a ready recording (except for my version with piano).

Hannes Merisaari conducting Dagbok, Jacintha Damström soprano.
Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course 29.3.2014. ©C.Damström

I was quite nervous about the course. While I was watching the other students conduct I could see that I was one of the students with least experience and routine. Moreover going in front of a orchestra knowing there will be probably loads of mistakes is my parts (because they were done in a rush in one night) wasn’t a very easing though either.

The final outcome of the orchestra (the sounding music), actually was slightly better than I had expected. But the actual conducting part was even harder than I had thought! Because even though I know my score very well, it is a very different thing to show in all the instruments BEFORE they should start to play. And I had before only once conducted a string band with about 10 people, but this time I had a small orchestra with about 25 musicians including woodwinds and everything! So I had a really hard time trying to read my score but remembering often enough to look up at my woodwinds for showing them where to come in. I think I didn’t really manage to do it a single time today!

Me conducting my song cycle Dagbok, Jacintha Damström soprano.
Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course 29.3.2014.

It was also funny, I felt the orchestra was sagging after and slowing down, but when I looked at the video after the musicians had gone home, I got to see how the orchestra is actually playing exactly according to my beat and that it actually is I who am (once again) sagging and slowing down. So once again I got to experience one of the main rules of conducting, don’t start listening to the orchestra, keep your tempo firmly and they will follow (although many times with a bit delay).

I noticed almost at once there was something odd about the horn in my piece, but it took me a while to figure out what it was: I had forgotten to transpose his score into F! (Horn is a transposing instrument, so it sounds a fifth lower than what is written, which you have to take in consideration as a composer. With the notation program Sibelius you can simply press one button and it transposes all the instruments which should be transposed, but you have to make sure you remember to push that button before printing. Well, I had forgotten, so now the horn was playing a fifth too low the whole time.) Luckily the horn player Olavi Kallasjoki is a very good horn player, so when I noticed my mistake he just concluded “Oh this part is in C? Oh no problem then!” and so he transposed it while sight-reading the rest of the practise and everything went fine on that front.

Olavi Kallasjoki

While I was conducting the first movement called Stanna, which begins with a soft pianissimo I was trying to sow the orchestra a very small nuance. On this occasion Juha Törmä made a very good and interesting point and said to me “You are standing with a bad posture, and this is followed by that the musicians begin to play with a similar uptight way, which makes the sound squeaky and tense. You should try opening your chest and have a more relaxed posture, which will make the sound of the orchestra more relaxed and soft instead of squeaky. And for making a smaller nuance, just beat smaller beats with your right hand.”

Example of bad posture by me, which was corrected by Juha Törmä (left corner).
Pirkanmaa Pinna's conducting course 29.3.2014.

One other thing Törmä kept saying to all of us students was mainly about how we conducted the tempo. “Stop bouncing so much with your right hand. The musicians want to follow you, so your movement should be as smooth as possible, so that they easily can predict when the next beat will come. Think of like if you would be playing the timpani, the mallet falls evenly towards the timpani and bounces evenly away. But if you want legato it should be even more smooth, like if you were moving your hand under water.”

So the orchestra played today from 10-15 o’clock (including a lunch break), and then we still cleaned up and watched the videos and got commentary from 15-17 o’clock. I was quite exhausted after the long day of conducting.

After the course I went home for cleaning up. I have been in such a hurry the past weeks that my flat is an absolute mess! But today my sister Jacintha is coming, so I have to make space so that her madras gets space on the floor. I’m very happy she is staying the night at my place! This is the FIRST time she is staying the night at my place in Tampere while I am here, since five years! (She once stayed the night in my flat with my parents during summer while I was working at sea, but I can’t really count that, as I wasn’t here.) Moreover she is always so busy, just like me, so we hardly have time to speak to each other even on the phone, so I’m very happy we have one evening time to speak about everything what is going on, I value her opinions very much. But we both are very tired, so we are going to bed early tonight.

Friday, 28 March 2014

Tampere Philharmonic: Prokofiev, Gliére, Teinsuu & Bartók

Friday the 28th of March. Went to school for getting my arrangement for mixed choir of “Min Gud” done, which I promised Markus Yli-Jokipii, but wasn’t feeling that well at all. So when I came home I noticed I had a slight fever. I decided I would only go to tonight’s philharmonic concert, and straight home from there… Famous last words!

Tampere Philharmonics programme tonight was:

Fri 28.3. 7 pm Tampere Hall
Anu Komsi, soprano
Prokofiev: Symphony No. 1 ”Classical”
Glière: Concerto for Coloratura Soprano and Orchestra
Tiensuu: Voice Verser
Bartók: Dance Suite

As expected, Anu Komsi was as spectacular as every, and Santtu-Matias Rouvali as popular as always among the audience. The concert was sold out, which before 2013 almost never happened, but now happens every time Rouvali is conducting!

Prokofievs first symphony was as usual quite cute and cheerful, Gliére’s music was rather boring but the fantastic soloist made it pretty pleasant, intermission and then the fun began! Tiensuu’s Voice Verser was spectacular! I loved it! As always I had really high expectations on Tiensuu (haven’t heard bad music by him so far), but still, he managed to top even my high expectations! Such a funny piece and the audience loved it! They absolutely LOVED it! (And when the audience loves contemporary music, I have to say it makes the composer in me very happy!). Bartók was also absolutely great, Rouvali as a former percussionist knows his rhythms. Jouni Kaipainen told us that his friend said to him before Bartók began “Now this is a piece that the audience usually doesn’t particularly like” on which Jouni could comment after the piece had ended “but today they seem to love it!”. And it was true, the audience loved Bartók as well. And Rouvali, as always.

After the concert I joined my friends for the famous “only one glass…”. I got to meet Santtu-Matias Rouvali personally, and I have to say, he is just as nice and pleasant person in real life, like on stage, if not even nicer! And he is a wonderful principal conductor, he goes and talks to everyone from his orchestra, which really creates a great team spirit in the orchestra.

After Tampere Hall’s restaurant Solo had closed we all went to a local bar, from there to Klubi and then still for a night snack… So the famous “one glass…” ended once again at 5 AM. But it was a really great night!

Thursday, 27 March 2014

Dance Theatre Triumph

Thursday the 27th of March. The (new) day began (after having slept 5h) with a phone call at around 11 in the morning “Hey, you don’t seem to have transposed the clarinet part in Dagbok, have you?” Yep, right he was! So as quickly as possible I transposed the clarinet part and sent if off once again.

The best thing about this morning was that I THOUGHT I had to go to a pedagogic seminar, but then noticed I have done that course already, so I had all afternoon FREE! But I was so exhausted by yesterday’s achievements so I actually didn’t get much done the whole afternoon.

At 18.00 there was a meeting for the upcoming  Korvat Auki happening RRR!!! on the 17th of May in Helsinki. I will have my piece Loco for solo viola in that concert, together with a dance choreography made by my friend Liisa Oikkonen. But todays meeting was in Helsinki, so Liisa was attending it (live) while I only attended the first 40 min via skype.

I left the meeting (skype) early because I wanted to make it to the last performance of the dance theatre Triumph starting at 19.00, and running together with my cellist friend Bella we made it just on time. (Luckily everything in Tampere is close!)

Triumph is a wonderful piece of dance-drama, choreographed by Ari Numminen to the music of our teacher Jouni Kaipainen. In the production there are four dancers on stage and also a string quartet playing live all music, Kaipainens string quartets. The piece is very fascinating, touching, beautiful yet raw and provocative. Numminen held a seminar for us in November where he told that he was asked to make a choreography saluting “old” dancers going in pension. He told us that his choreography is much about the relationship between art and prostitution. What he means is that being an artist is about giving something very personal of your self to the audience, and the line between art and psychological prostitution is very fine.

I simply love Ari Numminens choreography, his way of using the dancers and his way of visual thinking! I found his choice of theme extremely interesting and moreover it is something my friend Matilda and I have been discussing a lot lately. For me the piece also was against gender rolls and about feminism, or let me say, against chauvinism. In general, it’s a performance that makes you think, which I kind of think is one of the most important things with art. “I think, therefore I am”.

The performance is also very raw. In the show there is one woman (danced by Elina Jakowleva), who doesn’t start bowing to the audience and refuses to go with the flow and please the audience. That annoys the other dancers, and the male figure (by Samuli Roininen) forces her to bow for the audience. Elina at once straightens up again. But he enjoys suppressing her and forces her to bow again, and again. The other two dancers (by Mari Rosendahl and Anniina Kumpuniemi) find it amusing and cheer Samuli on. Elina keeps straightening up after every time she has been forced to bow. Samuli changes position and stands behind Elina instead and pretends like if he was taking her from behind, suppressing her even more and the other two dancers jeer on. Then they force Elina to walk of stage with them. At the stairs they push her very harshly down the stairs so that she almost falls and breaks her nose. Then Samuli hits her and throws her out through a side door and you hear her fall down a flight of stairs while screaming. Other dancers continue smiling to the audience.

At this point I was crying, both times I saw the show. For me this is exactly what our society today is about. Society doesn’t like strong women, and sexual assault and suppression is used for humiliation and decreasing any higher status a woman has achieved. And then we have of course also general humiliation of women by sexual assault, like all the gang rape cases in the past years (in India and New Zealand etc). Even though I was crying during the show I was happy about the scene, happy about someone standing up and showing us, the audience, what is happening in the world. And I have to say; I was even happier that it was a male choreographer who stood up for us women. Because that is where the change begins; it’s not about us women having to “win” our selves our rights, society has to change so that everyone, both men and women, believe and understand that we all have the same rights.

Dance choreographer Ari Numminen after the show.
© Cecilia Damström

Writing parts

Thursday the 27th of March. It’s 6 in the morning. I just got home from school, from the composition studio. The sun is already rising slowly over Tampere. I went to the studio at 22.00 and had decided I wouldn’t leave before I had got all the parts ready for my orchestrated version of my song cycle Dagbok, that will be practised next weekend… At about 2 AM I was already extremely tired, but as I had decided not to go before I was ready, so I stayed. At about 3 AM I put on some pop music and danced alone around in the studio for 3 min (in my concert dress, what a sight!) for getting up my pulse so that I wouldn’t feel so sleepy. At 3.30 AM I was putting on songs on Youtube and singing a long while I was doing the mecanical editing of my parts… At 5 AM I was finally READY!!!! Time to go home!!! This day only began like 21 hours ago…! Time for some SLEEP!

Good Morning Tampere!
(Taken at 5.40 from the window of the composition studio.)

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

Korvat Auki Tampere!

Wednesday the 26th of March. Finally the concert day has arrived! I woke up with my right hand aching quite badly. At breakfast I could hardly move my fingers anymore, and was getting a bit worried about tonight’s concert… I should have had score reading today, but luckily my teacher couldn’t make it, which gave me a bit more time for practising and concert arrangements. I spent all morning trying to relax my sore right arm. I practised two times really slowly through my piece Piano Delirium for tonights concert, then I had to copy and send of a bunch of papers for work (at sea), lunch, went to buy flowers and sparkling wine for the concert tonight, back home for an other shower and putting on make up. I still finished of the speeches for the days concert and went through them and sent them to Matilda for getting them corrected and printed out.

At 16.30 I went to the concert hall Pietilän sali and met for the first time live the lovely Minnakaisa Kuivalainen, producer of Tampere Biennale. She is a blessing for this concert! Thanks to her we were fortunate enough to get Tampere Biennales graphic designer Manu Alakarhu to help us with the layout of the programme, got it printed etc.

At around 17 o’clock my musicans started dropping in for testing the acoustics and at around 17.20 also my composer friends Lauri Supponen, Jens Lindqvist, Dante Thelestam and Sergio Castrillón arrived, as an un-official Korvat Auki Helsinki enforcement and support team.

Preparing the loudspeakers for the concert

The whole concert went surprisingly well! We had no technical problems (even though we had electronic music in the program!), everyone showed up, all pieces went well, all composers were there to bow at the end of the piece, all my speeches went okay, we had exactly enough flowers for everyone, the concert was successfully recorded and there was more audience than expected, over 50 people! I was happy to notice there were many un-familiar faces as well, so also new people found their way to the concert! The only small minus was that there was a too few programme copies, so they ended halfway, and that the concert was 10 min longer than planned… But luckily I had planned to be a concert-host already before this happened, so at least everyone got to know who was playing what piece and written by whom. But everyone was very happy with the concert and with how everything went and Minnakaisa was positively surprised by the large amount of audience (in contemporary music standards)!
Me as a concert hostess
The audience before the concert began

Here is the programme for the Korvat Auki Tampere concert! (Sorry, this time only in Finnish.)

Korvat auki ry ja Tampering ry esittävät yhteistyössä Tampere Biennalen kanssa:

Korvat Auki Tampere!
Biennale soi Metsossa

Keskiviikkona 26.3 klo 18
Pietilä-sali, Pääkirjasto Metso

Tervetuloa ensimmäiseen Korvat auki –yhdistyksen sävellyskonserttiin Tampereella! Konsertti järjestetään yhteistyössä nykymusiikkiyhdistys Tampering ry:n ja Tampere Biennalen kanssa osana kolmipäiväistä tapahtumaa ”Biennale soi Metsossa”. Korvat auki ry:n konserteissa esitetään uusimpia teoksia nuorelta säveltäjäsukupolvelta sekä Helsingistä, että Tampereelta. Konserteissa kuullaan kamarimusiikkia, teoksia soolosoittimille ja elektroakustisia teoksia nuorten huippumuusikoiden esittäminä. Tervetuloa seuraamaan sekä Korvat auki ry:n että Tampering ry:n toimintaa kotisivuillamme ja!

Henri Sokka: Pianosonaatti
 (säv. 2013)
I. "We're right behind you Altantis"
II. "Forward's the only way to go"
III. "If I forget Thee oh Earth"
Ville Hautakangas, piano

Matilda Seppälä: Itus – for solo violin (säv. 2013)
Tatuarttu Ruponen, viulu

Pauli Marttinen: Suite for Solo Fourth Horn (säv.2013) ke.
I. Vivo-Lento
II. Allegro
III. Alla marcia
IV. Adagio
V. Andantino
VI. Allegro (attacca)
VII. Grave
Ilona Keltti, käyrätorvi

Cecilia Damström: Piano Delirium
Cecilia Damström, piano

Sergio Andres Castrillón: Parade for a fuddle soul

Jens Lindqvist: Strukturen kitaralle ja nauhalle
Kalle Autio, kitara

Me playing Piano Delirium, Matilda turning pages for me
Pauli Marttinen and Ilona Keltti

Kalle Autio playing Lindqvist
Jens Lindqvist applauding his guitarist

After the concert mainly us composers and also a few musicians hung out for a while in our “backstage room”, before all going to our stamping ground, Gastro pub Tuulensuu. It’s a quite pricy but cosy candle lit pub sells a decent portion of fantastic potato wedges (best in town!) for only 4 euros! So most of us had a portion of potatoes and one glass (because most of us can’t afford more) and then many went already home. Or that is, my composer friend Matilda and I had a small disagreement about who had the right to use the composition studio now at night (as it’s open all night, which isn’t the case of the main building of the music conservatory), and as we both have deadlines drawing near we would both have needed the studio. But I argued my point that I let her have it yesterday, and I’m much more in a hurry now than her, because the parts for the orchestra version of Dagbok HAVE to be READY by tomorrow, while Matilda still has 4 days time for her deadline… Well, she was really nice and let me go to the studio today, which was life (=composition) saving.

Lauri Supponen raising a toast for Korvat Auki Tampere

Henri Sokka after the concert

Sergio Castillón and Lauri at Tuulensuu

The famous Tuulensuu potato wedges for only 4 euros!


Tuesday, 25 March 2014

A Day of Piano Music

Tuesday the 25th of March. Today I had a presentation about Shostakovich and Khachaturian piano music for young students, which I hadn’t had time to prepare before this morning. So I prepared the presentation, went to my own piano class at 10 with Risto Kyrö (where we went through my piano piece Piano Delirium, which I’m playing at tomorrows Korvat Auki Tampere concert), went for a short while to the practise of the production Bus number 13 (where five of my pieces are in), lunch, went to the library for finding sheet music for the presentation, presentation 14.30-16, teaching my own piano pupil 16-17, practising for tomorrows concert, church at 18 (as I missed mass on Sunday because of work). I got a message if I could get the orchestra parts ready for my song cycle Dagbok by today (as it will be played this weekend at Pirkanmaa Pinnas conducting course, which I now will be attending my self as well!), but it was simply impossible to get them ready before tomorrows concert.