Kaija Saariaho's music has been widely performed in various concert series and at festivals in the USA recently. The premiere of a new production of her first opera, L’amour de loin, at the Metropolitan Opera in December 2016 will be an operatic event such as has not been seen for decades, and it will be...
In 2016 women are still under-represented in classical concert repertoire, never mind the canon. At contemporary music concerts, however, women appear as composers with increasing frequency. How should we address the issue of a composer’s (female) gender in this day and age? Are we really still talking about this, in Finland?
Kaija Saariaho has composed a new opera, Only the Sound Remains, to be premiered in March. One of the significant roles is assigned to the kantele, an instrument never before used by Saariaho in her music.
"The Émilie Suite is a half-hour condensation, to a 2011 commission, of Saariaho’s monologue opera Émilie of 2007–8, reduced to three vocal numbers separated by two orchestral interludes – a dramatic cantata in all but name, alternately formal and beguiling, intimate and angry, almost from gesture to gesture."
"Saariaho’s compelling textures – at times gossamer and at others raw and heavy – feel almost predestined to couple with Weil’s thoughts. The first-class performance does justice to this masterpiece. It is a passion for our time that still is 'the kingdom of deceit where the innocent tremble'."
It is often claimed that computer music is so technical and 'cold' that it has nothing whatsoever to do with live music-making. Kaija Saariaho is a composer using a computer to create music for musicians and sound tape so that man and machine are mutually supporting yet contrasting elements.