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Aulis Sallinen

Publisher: Novello & Co

The Palace Rhapsody (1996)
commissioned by the Royal Northern College of Music
Work Notes
based on music from "The Palace"
Novello & Co Ltd
Works for Band/Wind/Brass Ensemble
Year Composed
16 Minutes
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Programme Note
Aulis Sallinen The Palace Rhapsody (1996)
Sallinen has viewed this new work in the vein of the Harmonie arrangements of 18th century opera and based the piece on his very successful opera The Palace, deriving the composition, in rhapsodic form, from some of the main themes of the opera. The Palace was premiered in 1995 at the Savonlinna Festival in Finland and receives its premiere in the original English version at New York City Opera in 1998.
The opera is a satire with dark undertones on the subject of authoritarian power - the libretto draws on two different sources, borrowing characters from Mozart's opera Die Entführung aus dem Serail and ideas from Kapuscinski's novel The Emperor, which observes the fall of Haile Selassie, last Emperor of Ethiopia. While the score includes many of Sallinen's most infectious melodies, the undertones are ominous as the occupants of the Palace transfer power from one dictator to an equally totalitarian authority.

© Aulis Sallinen

  • Ensemble
    The Guards' Band
    Elias Seppälä
  • Ensemble
    Rhineland-Palatinate State Philharmonic Orchestra
    Ari Rasilainen
Drawn from Sallinen's opera The Palace (1995), the music uses key episodes seamlessly stitched together in the manner of a single-movement suite and exudes an exuberant theatricality.
Geoffrey Norris, The Daily Telegraph,01/07/1997
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