the two childhoods

by Leevi Räsänen

for string quartet

Empty sheet

Leevi Räsänen

the two childhoods

Music Finland


I love my home town, Enonkoski. Its plentiful mushroom forests and bilberry branches sagging under the weight of their berries, spruce branches bent from heavy snow to an arc, the sweet-savoury breeches on the lakeside and, above all, my childhood home and summer house. Some of the most memorable moments of my life spent in them. My memories of childhood places have grown extremely sweet. Yet because of everything I've experienced there, my childhood has withered into a queue of stuttering memories, flashes amid a gray and weighty mass. The vast majority of my mind has been wiped into lukewarm mumble that I wouldn't care to look back on.

It felt important to try to address this memory-mush through art, writing nostalgic music or something that would reflect my attempts at understanding my own history. I think I still don't really understand what happened in my childhood. When I come to look at my school years, I see myself most often through the eyes of those others. Even now, my worst nightmares have something to do with me being back in elementary school.

Art I remember. Every opera and theatre performance, concert or record I enjoyed listening to. Every piece I so tirelessly (and sometimes very exhaustedly...) played at the piano and the recitals where I performed despite the fact that my hands were sweating and my heart was slamming almost through the chest. The constant requests from relatives and family friends to play something, because the music brought joy.

Joy is what music still brings me and I'll take it with me wherever I am. This piece is my song from Enonkoski.

The piece was written for TEMA and Savonlinna-quartets with the kind funding of the Arts Council of South Savo under Arts Promotion Center Finland.


2vln, vla, vlc


Chamber Works


Savonlinna-kvartetti, Pauhu Festival, Enonkoski, 16.7.2022


valkoista sumua – white fog; leviävä muste – trickling ink; mitä en muista, ei tarvitse unohtaa – what I don’t remember, I needn’t forget

Commisioned by / dedications

written for and commissioned by TEMA and Savonlinna-quartets with the kind funding of the Arts Council of South Savo under Arts Promotion Center Finland

PDF for promotional use


Archive number


+ Add information