Poul Rovsing Olsen: Piano Concerto and Orchestral Works
01 January 2014
It's gratufying to come across an excellent piano concerto never heard before. In this case that of Poul Rovsing Olsen (1922-1982), who is so unknown he doesn't even have a Wikipedia entry. Audibly a student of Nadia Boulanger and Oliver Messiaen, Olsen's music is melodic, rhythmically taut, and catchy in a conservative, twentieth-century way. Coupled with the Danish composer's concerto are his Symphonic Variations
and Au font de la nuit
for chamber orchestra. The "astral" music of the latter consists of fifteen minutes of "deep-space Messiaen." Soloist Christina Bjørkøe and conducter Bo Holten are Dacapo veterans, aided by the Odense Symphony Orchestra.