Photo: Trym Ivar Bergsmo
NJORD OPENING CONCERT // THE SOUND OF THE ARCTIC
NJORD Biennale opens on Thursday 30th January 2020 with nothing less than a musical expedition to the Arctic which explores the raw power of nature, cultural heritage and dialogues with the afterlife.
For the first time on Danish soil, the movements Bare hvitt, Brefront and Minnemøter from this year's composer-in-residence Lasse Thoresen's orchestral work LYDEN AF ARKTIS will be performed, exploring the life and the beauty of a disappearing wilderness.
Some of the Earth's most beautiful and harsh landscapes can be found in the arctic regions and bear witness to changes in our climate. LYDEN AF ARKTIS is inspired by Thoresen's own travels to Svalbard and Finnmark and expresses his interactions with the snowy expanse.
Together with the Arctic Philharmonic Sinfonietta, who will be appearing in Denmark for the first time, Tim Weiss will direct these three movements from LYDEN AF ARKTIS. From the white expanse in Bare hvitt, we will be taken from land to coast over gliding glaciers in Brefront and then into Sami territory in Minnemøter.
We'll be met with lonely bird calls, exploding fragments of ice and a spiritual journey into the rituals, memories and songs of the Sami people - called joiks - which bring legendary natural spirits to life and voice the harsh realities of the wilderness.
Having glimpsed the north of Norway, the evening then continues with the Danish premiere of Eivind Buene's classical violin concerto.
Memories and the soul are also behind Beune's composition. Like a tantalising triptych, Buene's violin concerto is divided up into three movements - Falling Angels, Sound Asleep and Among Voices of the Dead, which together create an echo of references.
Fragments from Alban Berg's 1935 violin concerto are woven between Buene's own harmonies, meanwhile Berg's own inspiration from J.S. Bach's hymn 'Es ist genug' can be heard.
In this prism, a wonderful dialogue flourishes with voices and atmospheres from the past. Each harmony and tone is indebted to historical classical notation, yet at the same time remains strangely detached.
Buene's VIOLIN CONCERTO is written for the virtuoso violinist, Peter Herresthal, who will be performing solo violin this evening