Finland, a Vocal Symphony for Soprano, Tenor and Large Orchestra

Keywords: Finland, vocal symphony, Evgeny Baratynsky, poetic structure, musical structure.


My composition Finland is a vocal symphony
for soprano, tenor and large orchestra set
to the text of the early 19th century Russian
Romantic poet Evgeny Baratynsky.
The main idea behind this composition involves
the combination of two contrasting approaches
to musical composition: composing an abstract,
independent musical work built on purely
musical laws of structure and development
and, on the other hand, writing a dramatic,
programmatic work, the aim of which
is to express emotions, to interpret and depict
the subject matter of the literary text.
The musical composition consists of six
movements, following the poem’s six unequallength
stanzas. Each movement is divided into
a purely orchestral section and a vocalorchestral
section, the latter featuring
alternately the solo soprano and tenor.
The work is written in the twelve-tone
technique and involves references to a late
Romantic musical language, emphasis
on new textures and sonorities
for the orchestra, occasional implications
of tonality, and incorporation of serial rhythm
in several of the work’s sections. The article
gives a short account of Baratynsky’s biography
and poetic writings and then proceeds
to analyze the composition Finland in terms
of both the large-scale structure and the details
within the individual movements.

Contemporary Composer