Eight Seasons - Concerto for Theremin and Chamber Orchestra (2011)

Kalevi Aho – composer

Kalevi Aho was born in 1949. He commenced violin studies at the age of ten, and his first compositions date from this time. Aho studied the violin and composition at Sibelius Academy in Helsinki and continued his studies in Berlin as a pupil of Boris Blacher at the Staatliche Hochschule für Musik und Darstellende Kunst. From 1974 until 1988 he was lecture in musicology at Helsinki University, and from 1988 until 1993 he was professor of composition at the Sibelius Academy. Appointed as the Lahti Symphony Orchestra's composer-in-residence in 1992 and as its honorary composer in 2011, Aho has been a freelance composer since autumn of 1993. Aho's extensive oeuvre includes (2014) five operas, fifteen symphonies, twenty concertos, other orchestral and vocal works as well as chamber music, and arrangements and orchestrations of works by other composers. He is an assiduous writer on music and has held a number of important positions in Finnish cultural life.

Kalevi Aho about the work:

"I composed the concerto in the autumn of 2011. The work is dedicated to Carolina Eyck and bears the title Eight Seasons - and its eight movements, played without a break, are just like a musical year; since ancient times the Sami people (the original inhabitants of Lapland) have divided the course of the year into eight sections.

My choice to use an electronic instrument to depict the course of the year in the far North reflects the shamanistic aspect of the instrument. To hear the theremin as a solo instrument can be a magical experience for the listener. The soloist is like a magician, a weaver of spells. producing music just by moving his hands without touching the instrument at all."

Intrumentation: Theremin, Wind quintet, Percussion (1) and Strings (4-4-3-3-1)

Length: 34 minutes

Publisher: Fennica Gehrman


In January, 2013 the Concerto was recorded by BIS Records and is available commercially since July 2014. The album won an ECHO Klassik 2015 in the category "Concert Recording of the Year (Music 20./21. century)".


I. Harvest

II. Autumn Colours

III. Black Snow

IV. Christmas Darkness

V. Winter Frost

VI. Crusted Snow

VII. Melting of the Ice

VIII. Midnight Sun