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BI 1886
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BI 1886

AHO, K.: Clarinet Quintet / Trio for Clarinet, Viola and Piano / Sonata for 2 Accordions (Vanska, Kwak, DiBello, Turner, Ross, Billmeyer)

The Classical Shop
release date: July 2012

Recorded in 24 Bit / 96Khz
album available as a Studio Master
Originally recorded in 2012


Osmo Vanska


Sarah Kwak


Susan Billmeyer


Veli Kujala


Record Label




Total Time - 73:45
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AHO, K.: Clarinet Quintet / Trio for Clarinet, Viola and Piano / Sonata for 2 Accordions (Vanska, Kwak, DiBello, Turner, Ross, Billmeyer)

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Clarinet Quintet

1 I. quarter note = 72 - 10:00
 Sarah Kwak Soloist
2 II. quarter note = 116 5:26
 Osmo Vanska Soloist
3 III. quarter note = 80 - Cadenza - 7:47
 Osmo Vanska Soloist
4 IV. Furioso, Prestissimo - 6:16
 Osmo Vanska Soloist
5 V. Epilogue: Andante 5:57
 Osmo Vanska Soloist

Trio for Clarinet, Viola and Piano

 Susan Billmeyer Soloist

Sonata for 2 Accordions

7 I. Prelude and Passacaglia 12:47
 Veli Kujala Soloist
8 II. Prelude and Fugue 12:32
 Veli Kujala Soloist

Renowned for his rich production in the field of orchestral music, Kalevi Aho is also a prolific composer for chamber forces. Here three works spanning two decades have been combined, with the Sonata for two accordions originating in 1984 as a Sonata for solo accordion described by the composer in his own liner notes as ‘comparable in aspiration with Liszt’s most virtuosic piano works’. Completed five years later, the duo version exploits to the utmost the unique possibilities offered by the accordion and remains highly virtuosic. It was premièred as late as 2002 by Veli and Susanne Kujala, who also perform it on this recording. At the other end of the time-line described by this album, the Trio for clarinet, viola and piano was commissioned to be the set chamber music work of the 2006 Tampere Viola Competition. While the single-movement Trio reserves a prominent role for the viola, Aho describes it as ‘a quite short and flamboyant work in which each instrument has something important to say’. Opening the album is the large-scale Clarinet Quintet, composed in 1998 as one in a series of quintets involving woodwind instruments, begun in 1973 with an Oboe Quintet and completed by the 2006 Wind Quintet. Again a musician from the first performance appears on this recording: better known as a conductor, Osmo Vänskä began his career as principal clarinet in the Helsinki Philharmonic. By 1998 he had already made his mark as a conductor, with seminal recordings of Sibelius’ symphonies with the Lahti Symphony Orchestra. But Vänskä was also – and has remained – a great champion of Kalevi Aho’s music, and was easily persuaded to take on the important clarinet part for the première of the quintet. For this return to the work, Vänskä has gathered members of the Minnesota Orchestra, where he is currently music director.

 "...The keyboard players ... are all excellent; and the Kujula duo shines in the Sonata, delivering it with breathtaking virtuosity and nuance."

Patrick Hanudel - American Record Guide - January/February 2013

"...This is another varied and stimulating collection that is very well played and recorded. As for the composer’s liner-notes - as lucid as ever - they strike a good balance between the genesis of these pieces and their musical content. Of the three works here the quintet will probably have the broadest appeal. The sonata - with its remarkably subtle control of dynamics and articulation - is more approachable after several hearings.Fine writing and solid musicianship; a feast for Aho fans."
Dan Morgan - - 23 August 2012

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