Veli-Matti Puumala


The music of Veli-Matti Puumala has a strong dynamic charge and tension. He exploits to the full the potential of the expressive means available in a refined and energetic way and is known to be a composer who has valued the ideals of Modernism throughout his career. The materials in his stylistic palette are clearly Postserial, yet he nevertheless aspires towards a mixture of rich timbres. His writing frequently displays a complex fabric bristling with activity, beneath which are structures designed to produce clarity, drama and contrast.

“In Mure (2008) I was searching for different ways to approach sense of time. Darkness and slowness may also be the keywords in relation to this work. Although written mostly in a bright Finnish daylight and well-lighted summer nights, the title – old Finnish word ”Mure” – refers to sorrow and grief. In this piece I was interested in the juxtaposition of movement and sound. The sombre and almost statue-like music gets a lot of space in the middle of the work where large chords in low register gradually change their density. In contrast to these growling sounds the beginning of the work contains superimposed layers of different textures and speeds. The work is written for the Ensemble Intercontemporain with great respect, and it is dedicated to Susanna Mälkki.”

Lecture 2, Wednesday 2.9. 13.45, Nordic Culture Point
Concert 7, Saturday 4.9. 17.00, Helsinki Conservatory of Music