PIA FREUND - MINNA TERVAMÄKI - KATI OUTINEN - PAULIINA FRED - PETTERI PITKO - LUNCH HOSIA
"TRY ME GOOD KING"
"I've heard it said that the executioner is excellent and I have a prickly neck." (On Anne Boley's mock stage on May 19, 1536)
King Henry VIII of England (1491–1547) was 17 years old when he entered his first of six famous marriages. Two unions ended in annulment, two wives were beheaded and one died in a crib. Marriages were political transactions, but each of them began with admiration, even falling in love. Yet every wife was a sacrifice, and the fate of the women was a whimsical man who was ruthless in his lust for power. The value of a woman was determined by her ability to produce a male heir — thus seeking to retain power and property in the possession of the family.
Try Me Good King
is a multisensory stage work on the misuse of power
Libby Larsen (b. 1950), one of the American composers, chooses universal themes for his works. Her song series Try Me Good King, which premiered in 2001, is based on letters from Henry VIII's wives and words spoken on the bastion stage. At the request of Pia Freund, the composer arranged the work for soprano and period instruments. The starting point for the music in the work is e.g. Songs by John Dowland, Thomas Campian and Michael Praetorius from the 16th and 17th centuries.
“I am looking for phenomena and structures in our culture. I am trying to understand the history of the phenomena we are experiencing today, ”says Larsen.
The stage version of the work, which will be completed in the spring of 2021, reflects on power and our attitude to its misuse. Being abused is a tragedy regardless of social status. When dealing with power, trust is also addressed.
In the stage version, these women will be voiced by soprano Pia Freund, dancer-choreographer Minna Tervamäki and actress Kati Outinen, who is also responsible for the overall dramaturgy. The group's musicians Pauliina Fred (traverso and recorder), Petteri Pitko (harpsichord) and Louna Hosia (viola da gamba) are distinguished experts in early music and periodicals.
The work combines old and contemporary music, history and modernity, different arts and sensory experiences. The audience of the show has their own role as both a wedding crowd and a mestling audience, as a wedding meal is enjoyed on the table and at it and the unnecessary queen is beheaded.
The Try Me Good King stage work is about an hour long and non-stop. Due to its mobility, it is ideal for visiting theaters and festivals.
Photos: Minna Hatinen
Kuvat: Minna Hatinen
Pia Freund is one of our country's leading international sopranos. The versatile singer is especially known as an interpreter of Kaija Saariaho's vocal music. He is equally in his element on opera stages, as a soloist in large orchestras, at the chamber music and stove, and as an interpreter of music literature and poetry. He has become known for his particularly flamboyant musicianship and his ever-renewing way of communicating with various disciplines and composers of our time.
Minna Tervamäki is a dancer-choreographer who has had a great career as a star dancer in the Finnish National Ballet. At the heart of his dance language is the opening of state-of-the-art technology in new directions, whether it be jazz, flamenco, circus or the visual arts. Tervamäki made his debut as a choreographer with Something Else? Since then, he has created more than twenty works.
Actress-director Kati Outinen, who has performed more than 50 film roles, has become known especially as Aki Kaurismäki's credit actress. Outinen, who has won the three-time Jussi Award, has also garnered international recognition, such as the Cannes Film Festival Award for Best Actress in 2002. Outinen has been a professor of acting at the University of the Arts Helsinki's Theater Academy in 2003–2013.
Pauliina Fred is a freelance musician specializing in historical flutes, a solo flutist for the Helsinki Baroque Orchestra and an artistic designer and flutist for the Finnish Baroque Orchestra. Pauliina also plays regularly in Norwegian baroque orchestras (Baroque Orchestra, Paulus Baroque and Nivalis Baroque Ensemble) and is a founding member of the Bravade Recorder Quartet. Fred has given concerts as a soloist and chamber musician throughout Europe, Asia and South America. Pauliina's call can be heard in the releases of several record brands.
Louna Hosia is a versatile musician from Helsinki who specializes in early music. He regularly performs as a cellist and gambist in the Finnish Baroque Orchestra, the Helsinki Baroque Orchestra, the Ensemble Nylandia, the Concerto Copenhagen and the Cornucopia and Brú ensembles. Hosia teaches at the Western Helsinki Music College and the Sibelius Academy. Hosia is the Finnish champion of sawmill 2018.
Harpsichordist Petteri Pitko actively performs as a soloist and chamber musician and plays in the Finnish Baroque Orchestra (FiBO). He is the artistic director of the Finnish Baroque Orchestra and a lecturer in early music at NOVIA University of Applied Sciences. Pitko has performed as a soloist with the Akademie für Alte Musik Berlin, the Zurich Chamber Orchestra, the Tapiola Sinfonietta and the Central Ostrobothnia Chamber Orchestra, and as a chamber musician at numerous music festivals in Finland, Europe, China and South Korea.
TRY ME GOOD KING
More information and performance subscriptions
petteri.pitko (at) gmail.com