Niels W. Gade (1817–90), the great Danish Romantic composer, left behind a collection of piano works that inspired both professionals and amateurs. Breathing new life into a selection of these, Armenian-Danish pianist Marianna Shirinyan performs Gade’s poetic Aquarelles, the almost orchestral Sonata in E minor, four chopinesque Fantasy Pieces and the little Chanson danoise, here in its first recording.
Poul Rovsing Olsen (1922-1982) wished for his music to be as close as possible to the listener, evident on this intimate recording of his songs for solo voice, featuring the successful Bruun Hyldig Duo. A student of Messiaen, Rovsing Olsen’s songs contain both French and Danish influences; the lyrics, however, come from all over Europe, including poems by William Blake, Rainer Maria Rilke, Charles Baudelaire, Pär Lagerkvist and more.
"The first sound is set in motion, is caught up by the next, which is caught up by the next, etc., in a powerful crescendo." In 1961, Else Marie Pade (1924–2016) wrote the tape composition Etude, which was met with greater excitement among reviewers than electronic music in general at the time. The length of the piece is 333 seconds, and as a tribute to Else Marie Pade 11 artists have remixed Etude on this CD – all 11 remixes with the same length as the original. The results are greatly diverse, but all show the inspiration from Danish electronic music's greatest pioneer, who insisted that all sounds are equally valid.
Delicately dancing with silence, Bent Sørensen’s tender piano concerto Mignon –part of his Papillons trilogy – reveals textural beauty and melodic elegance in a language both modernist and sweetly nostalgic. The piece was written for Katrine Gislinge, one of the most significant pianists in Scandinavia, and on this premiere recording she is accompanied by Lapland Chamber Orchestra, conducted by John Storgårds. An accomplished violinist, Storgårds even performs Sørensen’s two pieces for solo violin, Serenissima and The Lady of Shalott. Also included are the premiere recordings of two ensemble pieces – the classically inspired serenade Ständchen and the teasingly tuneful Sinful Songs.
"Welcome to the dreamworld of Bent Sørensen" Klassisk
Carl Nielsen (1865-1931) began writing for the organ only late in life. Starting with the 29 Little Preludes for Organ, Nielsen invented a personal organ style both Baroque and very Nielsenesque, refined in his last major work, the monumental Commotio. On this CD Professor Bine Bryndorf performs Nielsen’s organ works on the ideally suited organ at Nikolaj Kunsthal in Copenhagen, adding a selection of Hymns and Spiritual Songs with baritone Torsten Nielsen.
RECORDING OF THE MONTH 'Peerless playing and stellar sonics make this a must-have for organ buffs and Nielsen fans alike' MusicWeb International
The Spanish Maestro Rafael Frühbeck de Burgos (1933-2014) concluded his international conducting career with two years as the Principal Conductor of the Danish National Symphony Orchestra. This exclusive DVD box features the complete Symphonies by Ludwig van Beethoven as well as works by Berlioz, Richard Strauss and Joaquín Rodrigo. Also available on Blu-ray.
'A very welcome and important tribute to a great conductor' Pizzicato
This album presents the world premiere recording of a unique new set of pieces by Danish composer Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen, written and dedicated to his GRAMMY-winning playmates in the Kronos Quartet and Theatre of Voices with conductor Paul Hillier. Taking musical inspiration from the old ‘ground’ technique and from a certain famous Baroque canon, Green Ground offers a kaleidoscopic trip through the enchanting world of PGH, offering independent layers of playful sounds for strings and voices and then merging them together to the accompaniment of wooden percussion instruments.
'This is why it is ALWAYS necessary to keep up with what the Kronos Quartet and Hillier's Theater of Voices do' The Buffalo News
The concept of musical meetings – in Italian “incontri” – is a common denominator in the three orchestral pieces by Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen on this CD, recorded in the presence of the composer by the BBC Symphony Orchestra and conductor Thomas Dausgaard. The fantastic hallucinogenic landscape of the title work, presented here in a live recording from the BBC Proms 2012, meets the pulsating irony of the two modern classics Symphony, Antiphony and Mirror II – all three works reflecting the composer’s lifelong fascination with the absurd.
"A vibrant recording made in the composer’s presence" BBC Music Magazine
The music of Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen is at its most affecting when it is at its most absurd – like in the sinfonietta works on this recording by the composer’s longtime artistic accomplice Athelas Sinfonietta Copenhagen. The points of departure for the classically absurd PGH pieces on this album range from a red Skoda door, given to the composer by Athelas as a gift (Traffic), over randomly picked newspaper articles (Three Songs to Texts by Politiken) to general inspiration from Samuel Beckett (Repriser and Rerepriser) and Søren Kierkegaard (Og).
"With an increasing number of advocates among conductors and ensembles, Gudmundsen-Holmgreen is a composer whose reputation will continue to rise" Gramophone
Ib Nørholm stands as the renewer of the classical tradition in post-war Danish music. Next week, his opera 'The Garden Wall' (1976) will be performed in Copenhagen – Jens Brincker's liner notes for the CD 'Tavole per Orfeo' from 2012 give an introduction to the great Danish composer.
On the album Mignon Bent Sørensen proves himself as a very much modern voice, embracing both the here-and-now and a lurking nostalgia. Andrew Mellor provides the liner notes for the new release.
On the album ’EMP RMX 333’ 11 electronic artists remix Else Marie Pade – a great way to celebrate the Danish pioneer of electronic music, the initiator of the CD, Henrik Marstal, says.
The New York Philharmonic's Christopher Rouse CD has been nominated for a Grammy.
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