Sibelius – Complete Works for Mixed Choir

This two-CD set of Sibelius’ mixed choir works encompasses the composer’s entire career, ranging from student works of the 1880’s to his final choral composition in 1947. The works are in a general chronolical order. The first disc focuses on works written between 1888 and 1902, while the second covers mainly 20th century compositions.

Listening straight through, I could hear how Sibelius refined his harmonic structures and his melodies became more sharply defined. It was also illuminating to hear how Sibelius managed to create music of real depth within some very narrow confines.

A good portion of the works, for example, were written for amateur choirs. And that usually means limited vocal range and modest rhythmic and harmonic complexity. While Sibelius kept the basic elements simple, he still used them in such a way as to create compelling music that is anything but run-of-the-mill.

The Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir sings with a steely precision that suits this music. Even Sibelius’ early works have a Finnish quality to them (I can’t think of any other way to describe it). The choir’s crystalline ensemble blend rings true with that inherent Finnish character.

Jean Sibelius: Complete Works for Mixed Choir
Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir; Heikki Seppänen, director
2 CD Set
Ondine ODE 1260-2D

More Recent Posts

  • Classical Interviews – Arthur Zanin

    Charlottesville Symphony’s Principal Trumpet, Arthur Zanin, spoke with WTJU about discovering their orchestral passion, the versatility of the trumpet, and the significance of music in education. For more on Arthur Zanin, For more on the Charlottesville Symphony, visit: How I found the Orchestra The Different Sounds of the Trumpet Practicing for Trumpet The […]

  • Eric Coates Orchestral Works, Vol. 2 continues to entertain

    Tags: , , , , , , ,

    This release picks up where the first volume left off. It’s another collection of wonderful music by Eric Coates. Coates’ output was fairly consistent. it’s instantly appealing, modest in scope, and always effective in entertaining the listener. This release includes popular favorites such as “London Bridge,” and “Calling All Workers.” The cornerstones of the program […]

  • New Jazz Adds – 1/12/2021

    New Jazz Adds – 1/12/2021 Craig Brenner – Passages (Self-produced): “Craig Brenner explores the jazzy side of blues and boogie woogie piano. Called “a fine and funky pianist” by Living Blues, Craig has received multiple Indiana Arts Commission grants and he has been voted “Best Musician” in Bloomington, IN, in the Bloomington Independent; Craig & The Crawdads has […]

  • New Blues News – 1/12/2021

    New Blues News – 1/12/2021 John Fusco & The X-Road Riders – John The Revelator (Self-produced): “More than three decades after a teenaged Fusco ran away from his New England home to Louisiana and the Mississippi Delta — returning with a semi-autobiographical screenplay called Crossroads (and an unlikely discovery as a Hollywood screenwriter) — the […]