Rautavaara: Works for Cello & Piano Tanja Tetzlaff & Gunilla Süssmann
- Einojuhani Rautavaara (1928 - 2016):
- 1Cello Sonata No. 117:55
- 2 Preludes & Fugues:
- 2I. On the Name Einar Englund03:44
- 3II. Epitaph for Béla Bartók05:52
- Sonata for Cello Solo:
- 4I. Libero e poetico05:17
- 5II. Allegretto01:42
- 6III. Tranquillo04:56
- 7IV. Molto allegro02:29
- Sydämeni laulu:
- 8Sydämeni laulu03:20
- Cello Sonata No. 2:
- 9I. —06:00
- 10II. —03:58
- 11III. —08:07
Info for Rautavaara: Works for Cello & Piano
The passing away of Einojuhani Rautavaara (1928–2016), one of the most performed Finnish composers after Sibelius, left a deep void in the field of Finnish contemporary music. This new album by cellist Tanja Tetzlaff and pianist Gunilla Süssmann includes Rautavaara’s rarely heard works written for cello and piano. This album showcases Rautavaara’s skill in writing music for these two instruments and gives an opportunity for discovery.
Rautavaara’s creation for cello span several decades and highlight the importance of the instrument for Rautavaara’s oeuvre. The cornerstone of Rautavaara’s cello chamber music are the three sonatas. The earliest of the sonatas, a four-movement Sonata for Solo Cello, was written in 1969 and contains Baroque influences. Prior to this, the composer had already written Two Preludes and Fugues for cello and piano in 1955 firmly rooted in the Neo-Classical tradition as a young student. Soon after completing his solo cello sonata, the composer started writing his Neo-Romantic Sonata for Cello and Piano No. 1. However, the work was left unfinished and completed almost 30 years later, in 2001. Cello Sonata No. 2, completed in 1991, is much different in style, more modern and edgy, but based on a work written for a cello music competition in 1975. Polska (1977) for two cellos and piano is based on a folk tune from Rantasalmi. The origin of this work is connected to the genesis of Rautavaara’s first published opus, Fiddlers (Pelimannit) from the early 1950s. Song of My Heart (Sydämeni laulu) is the composer’s transcription from an aria included in his opera Aleksis Kivi (1995–96). In 2000, Rautavaara arranged the piece for cello, and fittingly for this funereal piece dedicated it to the memory of Estonian composer Lepo Sumera.
Tanja Tetzlaff, cello
Gunilla Süssmann, piano
performs an extensive repertoire, including the staple solo and chamber music literature, and important compositions of the 20th and 21th centuries. In 2011, a recording of cello concertos by Wolfgang Rihm and Ernst Toch was released by NEOS.
Tanja Tetzlaff has played with leading orchestras such as the Tonhalle Orchestra Zurich, Bayerischer Rundfunk, Konzerthausorchester Berlin, Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen, Royal Flanders Philharmonic, Spanish National Orchestra, Orchestre Philharmonique de Radio France, Orchestre de Paris and Cincinnati Symphony Orchestra, and collaborated with conductors such as Lorin Maazel, Daniel Harding, Philippe Herreweghe, Sir Roger Norrington, Vladimir Ashkenazy, Dmitri Kitajenko, Paavo Järvi, Michael Gielen and Heinz Holliger.
Chamber music also plays a significant part in Tanja’s career, with regular appearances alongside Lars Vogt, Leif Ove Andsnes, Alexander Lonquich, Antje Weithaas, Florian Donderer, Baiba and Lauma Skride, and her brother, Christian Tetzlaff, including at the festivals in Heidelberg, Heimbach, Bergen and Edinburgh. She and duo partner Gunilla Süssmann are also regular guests in concert series throughout Scandinavia and Germany, and recently recorded two albums released by CAvi-music, featuring the Brahms cello sonatas and works for cello and piano by Sibelius, Grieg and Rachmaninov. In 1994 Tanja founded the Tetzlaff Quartett, with Christian Tetzlaff, Elisabeth Kufferath and Hanna Weinmeister.
For her recent solo performances she has been with the Philharmonia Orchestra London, the Iceland Symphony Orchestra, Royal Northern Sinfonia Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, the Orchestre Nationale des Pays de la Loire, the Tokyo Metropolitain Orchestra and the NHK Orchestra Tokyo. In the chamber music field she goes on tour again with Lars Vogt and Christian Tetzlaff, with concerts in Germany, Paris, London, Bilbao, Antwerp and Luxemburg. In various chamber music projects she also appears at the Lucerne Festival and at the Mozarteum Salzburg.
Tanja studied with Bernhard Gmelin in Hamburg and Heinrich Schiff at the Mozarteum in Salzburg, and plays a cello by Giovanni Baptista Guadagnini from 1776.
Her virtuosity, combined with strong sensitivity and imagination is highly praised and her very personal and passionate interpretations create a unique contact with audience and press.
Süssmann has performed in venues like the Concertgebouw in Amsterdam, Wigmore Hall, Louvre, Festspielhaus Baden-Baden, and she is a popular guest in major chamber music festivals in Norway and abroad.
English Chamber Orchestra, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Oslo Philharmonic, Stavanger Symphony Orchestra, WDR Köln and Staatskapelle Weimar are among the many orchestras she has been soloist with. Chamber music has a precious place in her heart, and the core of this love is the 15-year-long collaboration with cellist Tanja Tetzlaff. Their symbiotic playing is described as magical by the press, and they have recorded two albums for the German label AVI, as well as for a film about Rachmaninoff.
The last season Gunilla Süssmann toured with musicians like Tine Thing Helseth, Alexander Sitkovetsky, Isa Gericke, Thorsten Johanns, Tora Augestad, Lise Davidsen, as well as with her own piano trio, the Süssmann-Trio. She visited Bergen International Festival, Risør Chamber Music Festival, Bodensee-Festival and Weilburger Schlossfestspiele, and her last album «Variations Sérieuses» was released on the label AVI on October 2016. The upcoming season sees Gunilla Süssmann performing with musicians like Christian Poltéra, Esther Hoppe, her own Süssmann-trio and Tanja Tetzlaff. She is a guest at Gloger Festival, Rørosfestival, Sendesaal Bremen, Bergen International Festival, and she is touring USA with Helsingborg Symphony Orchestra.