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  • Alto Flute, Bass Clarinet, Guitar, Accordion, Cello

  • Duration 10 min.

  • First performance on May 3, 2024, in Gent, Belgium by Glow Collective: Katrien Gaelens, flute, Dries Tack, clarinet, Pieter-Jan Vercammen, guitar, Ward Ginneberge, accordion, Hanna Kölbel, cello

I. Horizontal Rain 1

II. Horros

III. Horizontal Rain 2

IV. Martaat

V. Horizontal Rain 3

The Finns - nowadays often claimed as the happiest nation - have named the month of November (marraskuu), not so positively, after death. The ancient word "marras" refers to something already dead or about to die. In Finland, November is a transition period between autumn and winter; trees have already lost leaves, birds have migrated south, and many animals start hibernation ("horros" in Finnish): nature is symbolically dead. In northern parts of Finland, above the Arctic Circle, late November also means the start of the Kaamos (Polar Night), the mid-winter period when the sun does not rise above the horizon. In southern parts, like my home-Helsinki, the weather is arguably the most depressive of the whole year: there is no snow yet on the ground, the skies are constantly grey, a glimpse of the sun is a rarity, the stormy winds are harsh, and the freezing, horizontal rain hits your face mercilessly. At the beginning of November, during the "kekri" (a combination of harvest festival and All Saints' Day), the souls of the dead ("martaat" in Finnish) were thought to move amongst the living. TR, 2024

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