The Places Scenes of Finland and its capital Helsinki, the interlinked islands of Savonlinna, site of an ancient castle and Kerimaki, with its wooden church, suggest a vision of a remarkable country, moulded by its geographical features and its varied and long history.
1. Helsinki: Sibelius Park and Monument
2. Helsinki: Temppeliaukio Church
3. Helsinki: Lake Haapavesi
4-5. Savonlinna: Landscape
6. Kerimaki: Landscape and Church
The Music Finland found its musical identity largely through the work of Jean Sibelius. The son of a doctor, Sibelius belonged to a class of which the culture and language was Swedish. He learned Finnish and acquired his knowledge of Finnish literature and legend at school, developed his understanding of music in Germany, principally in Berlin, and established himself as one of the most considerable of the late Romantic symphonists, exploring new possibilities in a vein that might have seemed overworked. Here and in his tone-poems, based largely on Finnish legend, he created a national music that has defied imitation in the very breadth of his conception of the symphonic form.
A Musical Journey: Finland: Helsinki/Lake Haapavesi/Savonlin/Kerimäki
- A Musical Journey: Finland - Jean Sibelius review by CV
There is no commentary at all while Sibelius's music accompanies landscape images of Finland. There are two or three short string pieces followed by a complete recording of Sibelius's 2nd Symphony. The images reveal a sunny, clean and vibrant landscape which seem to have been photographed in the summer. My first LP of Sibelius was a 60's recording of the First Symphony and the cover was a chilly landscape of frozen pools and tufts of vegetation which was an appropriate illustration to reflect the music inside. Pleasant though the images on the DVD were, I wished we had seen dark winter scenes as well.