Kaija Saariaho: Lullaby for cello solo (2020)

Anssi Karttunen, cello

This is the first performance – in confinement – of Kaija Saariaho’s Lullaby for solo cello. She wrote the piece as a reaction of the sudden passing of our friend Oliver Knussen. Olly wrote a Tarantella for her 50th birthday and she uses material from that little piece as a dialogue with her own music.

The first performance of this piece was programmed for the Big Ears festival on the 26th of March 2020. Unfortunately the festival had to be cancelled because of the Covid-19 pandemic. Since Kaija had several other important premieres cancelled on account of the virus – the orchestral piece Vista and the opera Innocence – I felt that Lullaby should not also remain unheard. It is a particularly fitting piece for this moment.

Anssi Karttunen
25th March, 2020, Paris

Anssi Karttunen: Diary Of My Confinement-playlist