Having been an active duo since 2000, the Anna-Maaria and Olli Varonen Cello Duo has performed hundreds of concerts throughout Finland as well as in the Czech Republic, Spain, Sweden, and on several occasions in Budapest and elsewhere in Hungary. Performing as a cello duo has been the Varonens’ main occupation for several years.
published their first CD in 2005 and in 2006 Anna-Maaria and Olli were
invited to play a number of their own for opera singer Pirkko Talola’s
CD. “A Portrait of Two Cellos” and “Protected” (Suojeluksessa) were
recorded in July 2013. Both were published in November 2013.
(1978) has studied at the Salo College of Music, Jyväskylä University
of Applied Sciences, and most recently at the Liszt Academy in Budapest
as a student of Professor László Mezö. In addition to duo performances,
Anna-Maaria also has performed extensively in other chamber music
ensembles, both in Finland and abroad.
Olli (1965) has
studied with The Helsinki Strings, at the Sibelius Academy and at the
Liszt Academy. He has given concerts as a chamber musician performing
solo and as a soloist in 11 European countries, the USA and Singapore.
A few words about the CD “ A Portrait of two Cellos”
most common question we have been asked during our more than ten years
of active performing has been, “Is there enough repertoire for a cello
It is amazing how much has been composed for cello duos
dating back to the end of the 17th century up to today. Moreover, a
cello duo is able to naturally play pieces originally composed for other
types of instruments and ensembles.
particular disc, we have chosen pieces from around Europe and from
different periods in time. Couperini, the court composer of Louis XIV
“the sun king”, offers his regards. We also hear sentiments from the
court of Eszterházy where Haydn worked for 30 years before settling in
Vienna. Boccheri represents the Italian master composers; indeed, people
in his time came to know him as an excellent cello artist in
particular. There are also samples of Hungarian folk music in the form
of Bartók’s dances.
The most recent composition in this recording is Harri Wessman’s
for Two Cellos”, which was created in two phases: “Prelude” and “Gigue”
were written as early as 1989, and they were included in our repertoire
in 2011. The reception by the public all around Finland was so good,
and the enthusiasm of both the composer and our duo was so great, that
we created three more parts at the end of 2012. Played by our duo, the
new, 5-piece series had its premiere in Salo, Finland in March 2013.