Apr 28, 2014
On April 3rd at Saint Peter’s Lutheran Church in New York City, Heikki Sarmanto’s ensemble revived “The Magic Songs”. This is a musical collaboration between Heikki Sarmanto – noted Finnish composer, pianist, and by now a jazz legend in Finland – and Jeannine Otis, vocalist. It explores the poetry of Eino Leino as translated by the late Aina Swan Cutler through Mr. Sarmanto’s music. These songs, first performed and recorded in 1980, have become classics and are listened to all over the world. The collaboration between Mr. Sarmanto and Ms. Otis highlights the best of the possibilities of cultural exchange. At the Hymn to the World concert, the music was enhanced by the addition of two New York musicians: Bim Strasberg on bass and Greg Bufford on drums.
The event was supported by The Arts Promotion Centre Finland, The Finnish Performing Music Promotion Centre, Suomi-seura, the Consulate General of Finland in New York, the Finland Center Paul Tirri Fund and the Samuel Rubin Foundation. The net proceeds, $2003, were awarded to UN Women for their work.