Sunday, 4 May 2014

Ilari Laakso’s Goodbye Concert

Sunday 4th of May. I am really stressed about my thesis at this point, which should be handed on Friday. But I went to school today to meet up with the singer Piia Rytkönen who will be singing in my piece Flying high at my composition concert 14.5. I gave her the jouhikko (bowed lyre) that my friend Annika Fuhrmann very kindly has lent me and together we sat with Piia and figured out how the jouhikko should be played in the piece (while singing). I have not either every played jouhikko “properly”, but Annika showed me a good two years ago how it is played, when I was writing this piece (Flying high) for Tampere Biennale 2012.We didn’t rehears too long with Piia, because we both wanted to attend Ilari Laakso’s concert.

The concert was very nice and it included many nice pieces composed by Ilari Laakso, our former headmaster at the Conservatory of Tampere. All the money from the sold programmes went to charity and also in general there was a great atmosphere during the concert. I was looking forward to hearing Laakso’s song cycle, performed by our new lector in singing Ulla Raiskio, but unfortunately she was so ill she couldn’t sing nor come to the concert. So instead of the song cycle, Laakso’s children Anna Laakso (piano) and Joel Laakso (cello) performed a great duet.  Other performers were the string quartet “Uusi Helsinki –kvartetti” and many teacher from the Conservatory of Tampere. There was so much nostalgia in the air and at the end of the concert the whole audience gave standing ovations to our former headmaster who has worked very hard for the music life in Tampere and has managed to evolve it to a great level, for which we are all very grateful.

 After the great concert I went to church (evening mass in English) and spent the rest of the evening writing my thesis. Five days left on that front. And ten days left to my concert!

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