Jean Sibelius as a Song Composer

  • DOI: https://doi.org/10.18177/sym.2017.57.vlplr.11348

Abstract

Jean Sibelius, widely renowned for his symphonies and symphonic poems, also composed over 100 songs that were overshadowed by his instrumental masterpieces. The style of Sibelius’ orchestral writing is echoed in his songs, thereby developing an unconventional approach to his vocal writing, including bold melodic lines, broad intervals, extremely wide ranges of almost two octaves, and gravely somber moods. The vast majority of his songs are written in Swedish, an interesting contrast to his representation of Finnish Nationalism which is reflected in his tone-poem, Finlandia. The characteristics of his songs will be discussed in Arioso, Luonnotar, Var det en dröm, Flickan kom ifrån, and Säv, säv, susa, followed by performance.

Presentation Type: Lecture Recital

Recording Date: September 20, 2016

Recording Location: The University of Texas at Tyler

Performers: Sooah Park - voice, and Dr. J. Bradley Baker - piano

Bibliography

 

Borg, Kim. “How to Sing Them: Some Thoughts on the Interpretation of Sibelius’ Songs.” Finnish Music Quarterly, 1990, nos. 3-4: 58-61.

Dahlström, Fabian. The Works of Jean Sibelius. Helsinki: Sibelius-Seura, 1987.

Desmond, Astra. “The Songs.” In The Music of Sibelius, 108-36. Edited by Gerald Abraham. New York: Norton, 1947.

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Goss, Glenda Dawn. Sibelius: A Composer’s Life and The Awakening of Finland. The University of Chicago Press, 2009.

Goss, Glenda Dawn. The Siblius Companion. Greenwood Press, 1996.

Gray, Cecil. Sibelius. London: Oxford University Press, 1931.

James, Burnett. The Music of Jean Sibelius. Rutherford, N.J.: Farleigh Dickinson University Press, 1983

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Sirén, Valerie. “The Songs.” In The Sibelius Companion, 171-200. Edited by Glenda Dawn Goss. Westport, Conn.: Greenwood, 1996.

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Last modified on Wednesday, 26/09/2018

Sooah Park

Dr. Sooah Park is an active opera performer whose roles include Oscar, Countess, Susanna, Michaela, Salud, Boy, Pamina, Antonia , and Goldentrill . Dr. Park's performance experience includes a broad array of musical idioms and styles. She has performed in the countries of Brazil, Costa Rica, Mexico, Finland, and South Korea. In 2015-16 season, Ms. Park performed a soprano soloist in Bach's Cantata 140 with the Tyler Civic Chorale and a soprano soloist in Brahms' Ein Deutsches Requiem with East Texas Symphony Orchestra.

She is also an avid recitalist. She has performed a recital at the College Music Society International conference in Sweden and Finland in 2015 in which she presented songs by Jean Sibelius. Dr. Park presented a lecture at the National Opera Association convention in Indianapolis in 2016 and a lecture recital at NATS Texoma region conference in 2015.

Aside from her performing career, her directing scene from The Old Maid and the Thief was one of four finalists in the Collegiate Opera Scene Competition graduate category at the 2015 National Opera Association convention in Greensboro, NC.

Currently, Dr. Park is Assistant Professor of Music at the University of Texas at Tyler. She holds a Doctoral and a Master of Music degree from the University of Texas at Austin and her bachelor's degree in vocal performance from Eastman School of Music.

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