Tauno Marttinen (27. September 1912 – 18. July 2008) studied in Viipuri and later in Helsinki at the Helsinki Conservatoire. His piano teachers were Ilmari Hannikainen and Selim Palmgren, but he soon became increasingly interested in composing. Marttinen was also the conductor of the Hämeenlinna City Orchestra in 1949-58 and the founder and principal of the Hämeenlinna Music Institute.
Marttinen started his composing career in late Romantic vein. However, his first concerts in the 1940s met with criticism since the winds of Modernism had already landed in Finland. He then became interested in Dodecaphony and studied under Vladimir Vogel in Ascona but later abandoned strict dedecaphony and found his own, personal style incorporating elements from Neo-classicism and free-tonality with a hint of mysticism – he was called the Shaman of Hämeenlinna (his home town).
Tauno Marttinen was an incredibly productive composer; he wrote around 400 works with opus numbers as well as a wealth of other pieces. His oeuvre includes 10 symphonies, concertos for various solo instruments, operas as well as vocal, chamber and instrumental works. Many of Marttinen’s pieces have become popular standard repertoire, such as the piano piece Kimalluksia (Gleams).