Moomin Voices - Muminröster

Released: 2003


The classic edition of the complete collection of Tove Jansson's original Moomin fairy-tale songs. Used as course material at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts, this classic bestseller is hailed as the most innovative children's music album of the century.

The Moomin novels describe the musical activities of the Moomins, particularly those of Snufkin, his harmonica with trills and twiddles. All Moomin characters sing songs, often about their thoughts and themselves. The songs often serve as core statements of the characters' personalities. This music was heard outside Moomin Valley after they went live on theater stage in Stockholm. Director Vivica Bandler told Jansson in 1959: "Listen, here the people want songs". The earlier version of the play was cast in Helsinki with no music. Helsinki based pianist and composer, Erna Tauro was commissioned to write the songs to lyrics by Jansson. The first collection consisted of six Moomin Songs (Sex muminvisor): Moomintroll's Song (Mumintrollets visa), Little My's Song (Lilla Mys visa), Mrs. Fillyjonk's Song (Fru Filifjonks sång), Theater Rat Emma's Words of Wisdom (Teaterråttan Emmas visdomsord), Misabel's Lament (Misans klagolåt) and Final Song (Slutsång). More songs were published in the 1960s and 70s when Jansson and Lars Jansson produced a series of Moomin dramas for Swedish Television. The simple, yet effective melodies by Tauro were well received by the theater and TV audiences. The first songs were either sung unaccompanied or accompanied by a pianist. While the most famous Moomin songs in Scandinavia are undoubtedly Moomintroll's Song and Little My's Song, they appear in no context in the novels. The original songs by Jansson and Tauro remained scattered after their initial release. The first recording of the complete collection was made in 2003 by composer and arranger Mika Pohjola on the Moomin Voices CD (Muminröster in Swedish), as a tribute to the late Tove Jansson. Tauro had died in June 1993 and some of Jansson's last lyrics were composed by Pohjola in cooperation with Jansson's heirs. Pohjola was also the arranger of all songs for a vocal ensemble and chamber orchestra. The same recording has been released in a Finnish version in 2005, Muumilauluja. The Finnish lyrics were translated by Kirsi Kunnas and Vexi Salmi. The Swedish and Finnish recordings of Moomin Voices, and their respective musical scores, have been used as course material at Berklee College of Music in Boston, Massachusetts. The Moomin Band is dedicated to exclusively performing the original lyrics and unaltered stories by Ms. Jansson. This band is lead by Pohjola on piano, with vocalists Mirja Mäkelä and Eeppi Ursin.

Tove Jansson - lyrics
Erna Tauro - compositions
Johanna Grüssner - voice
David Ambrosio - bass
Laura Arpiainen - violin
Mark Ferber - drums
Kerstin Frödin - recorder
Fernando Huergo - bass
Robert Moose - violin
MiHee Park - violin
Mika Pohjola - piano & composer
Yusuke Yamamoto - percussion & flute