J.Sibelius, Masonic Ritual Music
(original and orchestrated versions)
J.Kuusisto / Lahti SO, YL Male Voice Choir / M.Pohjonen, H.Jurmu, H.Viitanen
In order to be among the target audience for this disc, you should be a Freemason or Sibelius-completist; preferably both: Sibelius Masonic Ritual Music, though hardly free of minor gems, isn’t far up the list anybody’s must-have Sibelius—neither in its original form with organ accompaniment as he wrote it for his, Finland’s first and finest Lodge, nor in the version orchestrated, bar one bit that Sibelius did himself, by conductor Jaakko Kuusisto. But it is a sign of how we live in the customer’s golden age of the record industry: To receive such superb performances of these miscellany, including the last of the Masonic movements—a male a cappella version of Finlandia—is the embodiment of a collector’s embarrassment of riches.