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Perspectives (69°42′, North | 19°00′ East) – Tromsø Chamber Orchestra

GYÖRGY Kurtág: Aus der Ferne III · ARVO Pärt: Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten · WITOLD LUTOSLAWSKI: Musique Funébre · FREDRIK HÖGBERG: 'Hitting the First Base' concerto for double bass (WORLD PREMIERE RECORDING) · ANTON WEBERNmore…: "Fünf Sätze" for string orchestra

Tromsø Chamber Orchestra · Kolbjørn Holthe, leader/conductor · Dan Styffe, solo double bass

Seminal works from the orchestra of Arctic Tromsø. [Gramophone]

kr 139

Debut from Tromsø Chamber Orchestra: Webern, Pärt, Kurtág, Högberg and Lutosławski

The works on this recording embrace ninety-nine years of European music history and are balanced by paradoxical opposites; the programme is dominated by moods of the long, arctic winter night – grief, longing, absence – and the midnight sun’s unceasing orgy of light and life. Kolbjørn Holthe and his inspired orchestra display both playful virtuosity and extreme serenity in their interpretations of this repertoire.

The first three works definitely belong in the darkness of the polar night. Webern’s Fünf Sätze is his first atonal work, originally written for string quartet. The Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten by Pärt is a mourning piece over the death of Britten in 1977. Kurtágs captivating Aus der Ferne III from 1991 closes the section. Offering the greatest contrast to the rest of the repertoire is the world premiere recording prize-winning Swedish composer Fredrik Högberg’s double bass concerto Hitting the First Base, with soloist Dan Styffe. Lutosławski considered Musique funèbre to be a turning point in his career even as early as the first performance in 1958.

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The base and identity of the orchestra are given in the coordinates for the town of Tromsø (69°42’ north | 19°00’ east). It is from this vantage point their perspective on five European composers is applied; five composers who in turn exist in mutual contrast and perspective.

The polar night

The first three works definitely belong in the darkness of the polar night. Webern’s Fünf Sätze is his first atonal work, originally written for string quartet. The Cantus in Memoriam Benjamin Britten by Pärt is a mourning piece over the death of Britten in 1977. The work is one of the earliest examples of Pärt’s tintinnabulation-style where minimalism embraces the extreme, much like the perspectives in the polar landscapes. Kurtágs captivating Aus der Ferne III from 1991 closes the section.

The midnight sun storm

With Kurtág’s work the arctic night is definitively behind us, and offering the greatest contrast to the rest of the repertoire is the prize-winning Swedish composer Fredrik Högberg’s double bass concerto Hitting the First Base (2008). It does just what the double meaning of the title’s baseball metaphor promises: it hits our senses in a postmodern explosion of audible photons, a rhythmic, lively midnight sun storm of vibrant musicianship. The work was composed for and is dedicated to double bass player Dan Styffe who also assisted the composer in shaping the highly virtuosic, physically demanding and dynamic solo part.

Lutosławski considered Musique funèbre to be a turning point in his career even as early as the first performance in 1958, the beginning of a new period of self-found freedom to move around the musical twelve-note terrain, emancipated both from tonality and from more rigid versions of dodecaphony. Musique funèbre was “the first, and most certainly not the last word I will utter in what to me is a new language,” wrote Lutosławski.

Tromsø Chamber Orchestra

Tromsø Chamber Orchestra is the only full-time professional chamber orchestra in Norway. The orchestra has become well-known as a modern and versatile ensemble of high international standard. The orchestra gives weekly concerts in Tromsø, and the musicians also serve regularly as a part of the Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra, through the organisation NOSO AS.

The orchestra presents some of the most sought after soloists and artistic leaders from all over the world. Musically their range is from chamber ensembles and chamber orchestra to bigger symphonic productions. In addition to this, the orchestra has a high reputation in crossover repertory, through several co-productions with some of Norway’s most demanded pop- and jazz-artists. Kolbjørn Holthe has been the artistic leader since 2006, and under his leadership the orchestra has evolved into an ensemble that inspires and engages both the audience and the musicians passionately. Henning Kraggerud will follow Mr. Holthe as artistic leader from autumn 2012.

Anton Webern |Arvo Pärt |Dan Styffe |François Eckert |Fredrik Högberg |György Kurtág |Kolbjørn Holthe

Release date: 01.06.2012

EAN : 7033662013029

Cat.No.: PSC1302

Priskategori : CD