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Planetarium Music – Sorgsang II

Birgitte Alsted

Planetarium Music – Sorgsang II

Carsten Hobolt, Birgitte Alsted

Birgitte Alsted's Sorgsang II (Lament II) is based on the Book of Job in the Old Testament. The story of Job is one full of paradoxes. A man blessed with wealth and family is singled out by God, who takes everything away from him. Although Job’s pain and anger are increased by his friends’ conviction that he somehow must have deserved God’s punishment, this cruel treatment is not a punishment at all, but a test. From the concert series Music at the Planetarium.

 

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Sorgsang II (Lament II) (1995)
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Sorgsang II

by Wayne Siegel

 

Sorgsang II (Lament II) is based on the Book of Job in the Old Testament. The original version, Sorgsang, was a work for tape with spoken narration commissioned by the Danish Radio in cooperation with DIEM, realized at DIEM and premiered on Danish Radio. Sorg­ sang II is a second version without narration commissioned by DIEM with support from the Danish State Art Foundation for premier at the Planetarium concert series in December 1995 with images by photographer Helle Nørregaard. Although the spoken narration is lacking in Sorgsang II, the work still possesses a dramatic and narrative quality, using extended vocal techniques and singing performed by Carsten Hobolt (and Birgitte Alsted) as well as other recorded sounds in their original form or as the raw material for computer treatment.

The story of Job is one full of paradoxes. A man blessed with wealth and family is singled out by God, who takes everything away from him. Although Job’s pain and anger are increased by his friends’ conviction that he somehow must have deserved God’s punishment, this cruel treatment is not a punishment at all, but a test. Job is innocent. The story supposedly has a happy end, since Job is given everything twofold again. But can the tears of grief and rage after the meaningless loss of health, family, property and respect ever really be wiped away? As Alsted puts it: “I have worked intuitively with the music. Sorgsang is not a reiteration of the Book of Job. My music doesn’t comply with the happy ending, where Job gets his reward in the end. One might say that the music creates a contrast to the Biblical text. But don’t we always carry grief with us, once we have met with it?”

In the Book of Job there is a description of the terrible, fire-breathing Leviathan: the image of chaos and everything God had to struggle against in creating the universe. “Towards the end of my work on Sorgsang, I realized that the Leviathan in a certain sense symbolizes creativity itself and the struggle necessary in the creative process.” His meeting with the terrifying

Wayne Siegel, 1997

Release date: 
August 1997
Cat. No.: 
8.224083
FormatID: 
Digital only
CoverFormat: 
Jewel Case
Barcode: 
730099978323
Track count: 
1

Credits

Digitally produced, mixed, edited and mastered at DIEM, Aarhus, Denmark

© Dacapo, Copenhagen 1997

Sound engineer: Claus Pedersen
Danish translation: Lis Fihl Jensen

This recording is sponsored by Danish Composers’ Society / KODA’s Funds for Social and Cultural Purposes.

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