Einojuhani Rautavaara (1928–2016) has been called Finland’s most notable musical export after Sibelius. His prolific output includes eleven operas; eight symphonies; eleven concertos; choral works for the Orthodox, Lutheran, and Roman Catholic churches; secular choral works; chamber music; vocal solos; and keyboard works. Many of these works were commissioned by internationally known performers and ensembles including Vladimir Ashkenazy, Richard Stoltzman, Hilary Hahn, Anne Akiko Meiers, Gerald Finley, the Philadelphia Orchestra, and the Juilliard School of Music Orchestra. Perhaps most frequently performed are his Cantus Arcticus, a concerto for recorded arctic birds and orchestra, Angel of Light, his seventh symphony, and the Lorca choral suite depicting Death as a stalker in a Spanish village.
Rautavaara’s Journey in Music is divided into two sections; the first a biography and discussion of works that show his various style changes, from neoclassical, to twelve-tone, to neoromantic, and finally to a personal expressive style combining elements of twelve-tone and tonality. The second part divides his works by genre and gives more detailed information of stylistic analysis, libretto, provenance, and, often, reception.
Barbara Hong is a retired music history faculty member from Western Michigan University and a former Fulbright grantee for study in Finland. She is also the co-author of An Historical Dictionary of the Music and Musicians of Finland.
PART ONE: Biography and Works
Chapter One: Becoming a Composer, 1928-53
Chapter Two: The Study Years in Helsinki, Vienna, and the United States, 1948-57
Chapter Three: First Serial Works, 1957
Chapter Four: Serialism, Opera, Third and Fourth Symphonies, 1957-66
Chapter Five: Neo-Romanticism, 1965-73
Chapter Six: The Kalevala and Angel Works, 1974-80
Chapter Seven: Postmodernism, 1981-89
Chapter Eight: The 1990s
Chapter Nine: After 2000, This Journey Goes On
PART TWO: Works by Genre
Chapter Ten: Operas
Chapter Eleven: Orchestral Works
Chapter Twelve: Concertos
Chapter Thirteen: Solo Vocal Works
Chapter Fourteen: Choral Works
Chapter Fifteen: Solo Keyboard Works
Chapter Sixteen: Chamber Music
Chapter Seventeen: Music for Electronic Tape
Chronology of Works