Concerto for Flute and Orchestra - Dances with the Winds
- Staff Pick
“Atmospheric and difficult!”
This is a very atmospheric concerto written by the Finnish composer Einojuhani Rautavaara. His style has been described as 'mythical and austere' and this is reflected in the colour and variety in each of the four substantial movements. The complexity of the writing together with the use of all four standard flutes represents a serious challenge to the performer but the result is a fantastically rich and exciting work that will delight audiences everywhere..
From the Publisher
Rautavaara's Concerto for Flutes and Orchestra (1973) employs the use of all four standard flutes, pushing each to its limits in range and dynamics. The first movement, Andantino, begins with a short flute cadenza quickly whirling up into an orchestral sound full of drama and mysticism. A middle section featuring the bass flute follows before the C flute ends the movement. The Vivace features the piccolo in a slightly manic, carnival-inspired theme while the alto flute dominates the third movement with a soulful, choral-like melody. The final movement begins with a cataclysmic piano crescendo before the bass flute brings back the mysticism of the first movement, only interrupted by a C flute middle section reminiscent of the piccolo theme. The piece ends with a dark Bb minor chord while the soloist remains alienated playing a long D natural that fades back into silence.
Performance duration (approx): 20'00"
Difficulty level, roughly compared to ABRSM exam grades. 0 is beginner, 9 is advanced (beyond grade 8).