«Dan Styffe is easily one of the top international soloists on his instrument and a major force in contemporary music,» the magazine Bass World wrote about one of Norway´s most renowned double bassists last album «Secret Memories». «Octophonia» is Dan Styffes sixth and latest solo album.
Six double basses!
Arne Nordheim has since the 1960s been of the most recognized Norwegian composers and was a front figure for the entire Norwegian postwar musical modernism. His works «Clamavi» (1980), inspired by a biblical psalm, a cry for help dividing the world into good and evil people and intentions, «Partita» (1982), written for the uncommon musical group of six double basses – performed by Styffe and several of his students, as well as Håkon Thelin – and «Three stanzas for double bass alone» (1998), are all featured on «Octophonia».
Lidholm, Lutoslawski & Sallinen
Ingvar Lidholm was one of several composers Nordheim studied privately with. His «Fantasia sopra laudi» (1977) is unusually organically written in a way that opens large musical vaults filled with light. Together with Ingrid Andsnes, Styffe also performs «Grave: Metamorphoses for cello and piano» (1981) by Witold Lutoslawski – a composer who, with his sound mass techniques, would be a markedly important inspiration for Nordheim. Like Nordheim, Aulis Sallinen is also a composer with a social and political involvement with music beyond the purely aesthetical. Styffe performs his «Elegy for Sebastian Knight» (1964), a work that represents a turning point in the composer´s practice, back to an expressive, free tonality.
A world class double bassists releases his sixth solo album
Dan Styffe, originally born in Sweden, has throughout all his career been established in Norway, and is a central figure in Norwegian musical life. After studies with Göran Nyberg, Knut Guettler and Gary Karr, he made his solo debut in 1985 and has since then been a sought after solist and chamber musician across the world. Styffe is a jury member of several international competitions and has participated in several international conventions. At the present, he is a professor at the Norwegian Academy of Music and Barratt Due Institute of Music. His discography is comprehensive, with several CDs and solo albums behind him, all received to great critical acclaim. «Octophonia» is his sixth solo album.