1111/1100, perc, string quintet

Duration: 13'

commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association – Gustavo Dudamel, Music & Artistic Director

premier November 13, 2018 Los Angeles Philharmonic cond. Susanna Mälkki

published by Fennica Gehrman

A composer works with sounds and time but also with emotions and images. When starting a new score I usually try to find an “overall idea”, which can be anything from an atmosphere to a phenomenon of any kind. In Hele it has been the title, that has more or less given the starting point and guided the compositional process for the piece. Hele is the Finnish word for musical grace note – thus a very specific expression. It is anyhow very close to a word meaning bright and light as well. The third aspect the title has suggested the music is the rhythmical motive it contains – that of two short note values.

Hele is scored for 12 musicians, some doubling unusual instruments like toy bird whistles. It was both an honour and a joy to write the work for the musicians of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.


review at San Francisco Classical Voice:

New Classic LA 15.11.2018 (Brandon Rolle):

Rounding out the first half was Lotta Wennäkoski’s Hele, an eccentric and energetic respite from the broodiness of the first two works. Wennäkoski utilized the slide whistle amid frantic and agile ensemble writing to sometimes atmospheric, sometimes cartoonish, but always surprising effect.

HS-arvio 9.2.2020 (Hannu-Ilari Lampila):

Luontoassosiaatioita herätti myös Hele (2018), ainakin silloin, kun lintupillit olivat äänessä. Hele on erittäin nopeasykkeistä, lyhyistä nuottiarvoista rakentuvaa, pistemäisesti nykivää, viuhahtelevaa ja poukkoilevaa musiikkia.

Heleen maanista säkätystä, ujellusta, puhinaa ja sirinää oli hauskaa seurata. Sekin on soinnillis-motiivisen mielikuvituksen räjähdysmäinen, tarkasti rytmitetty purkaus.