|Born||20 June 1931|
|Died||5 June 2010|
Arne Nordheim (20 June 1931 – 5 June 2010) was a Norwegian composer. Nordheim received numerous awards for his compositions, and from 1982 lived in the Norwegian government's honorary residence, Grotten, next to the Royal Palace in Oslo. He was elected an honorary member of the International Society for Contemporary Music in 1997. On 18 August 2006, Arne Nordheim received a doctor honoris causa degree at the Norwegian Academy of Music. He died at the age of 78 and was given a state funeral.
At the then Oslo Conservatory of Music (now the Norwegian Academy of Music), where Nordheim studied from 1948 to 1952, he started out as a theory and organ student, but changed to composition, studying with Karl August Andersen (1903–1970), Bjarne Brustad, and Conrad Baden. Then in 1955 he studied with Vagn Holmboe in Copenhagen, [ citation needed ]. Later he studied electronic music in Bilthoven (1959), and paid many visits to the Studio Eksperymentalne of Polish Radio (1967–1972), where many of his early electronic works were realised (including Pace, Solitaire, and Lux et tenebrae (Poly-Poly)). In 2005, many lost and forgotten tapes of electronic compositions for radio drama for the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation (NRK) were rediscovered, reminding us that Nordheim also developed his electronic musical language in his home country.and studied musique concrète in Paris
His Essay for string quartet was first performed in Stockholm in 1954, but Nordheim always considered his String Quartet of 1956 as his Opus 1. His musical output is focused around themes of 'solitude, death, love, and landscape'; ed è sùbito sera' ('and suddenly it is evening') is the only part of the text that can be heard.these themes are already evident in his song cycle Aftonland (Evening Land, 1959), a setting of poems by the Swedish poet Pär Lagerkvist, which brought him national recognition. The 1961 Canzonaper orchestra was his international breakthrough. Inspired by Giovanni Gabrieli's canzone, the work showcases Nordheim's historical leanings, as well as his occupation with space as a parameter of music. Nordheim's spatial concerns, coupled with his focus on death and human suffering, are brought together in what is arguably his most famous work, Epitaffioper orchestra e nastro magnetico (1963). Written in memory of the Norwegian flautist Alf Andersen, who died that year at a very young age, the work incorporated Salvatore Quasimodo's poem Ed è sùbito sera. Originally conceived for orchestra and chorus, Nordheim realised that his wish to have the whole performance space 'singing' was better achieved with the use of electronic means. The result is a remarkable, almost imperceptible, blending of the orchestral sounds with the choral sounds of the tape, where the final line '
His later compositions include The Tempest (1979), Klokkesong (1984), Magma (1988), the Violin Concerto (1996) and Fonos for trombone and orchestra (2004). Arne Norheim was inspired by the neumes and the sound of the medieval bells in Kaupanger stave church in composing the work Klokkesong, which was first performed in the church. In The Tempest, a ballet based on Shakespeare's play, electronics and orchestral sounds are again mixed, while the focus is more strongly on vocal music (e.g. the 'double voice' of Caliban), while Nordheim's continued use of historical elements is shown by the incorporation of Leonardo da Vinci's musical rebus, which solved reads Amore sol la mi fa remirare, la sol mi fa sollecita.
1968 saw Arne Nordheim being bestowed with the Nordic Council Music Prize for his Eco for soprano, two choirs and orchestra. The work marks the start of a new development phase, in which Nordheim proved that he could create electrophonic-sounding timbres from conventional instruments.
In 1970 he and sound engineer Eugeniusz Rudnik made the piece Poly-Poly for the Scandinavian pavilion at Expo '70 in Osaka.This sound installation consisted of six tapes of different lengths which are played in a loop, such that the piece will not repeat itself for 102 years. A 21-minute long concert version was released the year after, with the name Lux et Tenebrae.
Throughout his career, Nordheim would receive a number of commissions which would result in such works as Greening (1973) written for Zubin Mehta and Los Angeles Symphony Orchestra; the ballet Stormen (1979) for Schwezinger Festival in Germany; the cello concerto Tenebrae (1980) for Mstislav Rostropovitch; Aurora (1983) for vocal ensemble Electric Phoenix and the orchestral work Magma (1988) for the Concertgebouw Orchestra in Amsterdam. Additional major works include Wirklicher Wald (1983) for soprano, cello, choir and orchestra commissioned for the centenary anniversary for the Oslo Music Conservatory and Boomerang (1985) for oboe and chamber orchestra written for the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra.
Draumkvedet is a monumental stage work for orchestra, (acting) chamber choir, soloists and dancers, and was performed 40 times in 1994 with the Broadcasting Corporation Radio Orchestra and Grex Vocalis. A recording featuring these performing forces conducted by Ingar Bergby was made in 2001, and released in 2006 as a two-CD set on the Simax label (Simax PSC 1169). Based on a medieval Norwegian poem (Draumkvedet, The Dream Song), the work was composed in honor of the millennium of the city of Trondheim in 1997.
Nordheim was a great admirer of playwright Henrik Ibsen and devoted time to study his life and literary output. Nordheim composed music for Den Nationale Scene's performance of Peer Gynt. On a number of occasions, Nordheim held talks titled “Thre composers' approaches to Peer gynt” which featured a highlight where Edvard Grieg's music for Aase's Death was sampled and spliced with Nordheim's own composition. Naturally, both composers had elected to compose their scores for this scene in b minor.
To commemorate Nordheim's 70th birthday in 2001, a celebratory concert was held, featuring the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra. The Norwegian Ministry of Culture and Church Affairs would also celebrate the composer, and established the Arne Nordheim Composer's Prize which is bestowed on an annual basis to a composer of Norwegian residence.
In later years, Nordheim suffered from dementia, and expired early on Saturday 5 June 2010, following a prolonged bout of illness. The state funeral was held at the Oslo Cathedral on the 16th of June.
3457 Arnenordheim, a minor planet circling the sun in the main asteroid belt between the planets Mars and Jupiter was named for the composer after its discovery in 1985.
Mark-Anthony Turnage CBE is a British composer of classical music.
Knut Nystedt was a Norwegian orchestral and choral composer.
Sunleif Rasmussen is the foremost Faroese composer of classical music.
Augusta Read Thomas is an American composer and professor.
Brett Dean is an Australian composer, violist and conductor.
Grex Vocalis is a Norwegian chamber choir, formed in 1971 by Carl Høgset. The repertoire spans from the renaissance to music by contemporary composers. The choir has been awarded the Norwegian Spellemannprisen prize for three of its thirteen albums and has won first prizes in national and international contests. In 1999 Grex Vocalis was awarded Il Gran Premio Città di Arezzo as the overall best choir in that year's contest. Grex Vocalis is primarily an a cappella choir, comprising ca. 35 singers, but performs on occasion also with soloists and orchestras. They have toured extensively in Europe, and also given a series of concerts in Japan and Cuba.
Roman Haubenstock-Ramati was a composer and music editor who worked in Kraków, Tel Aviv and Vienna.
Iraida Yusupova is a Turkmenistani composer of half Russian half Tatar ethnicity who lives in Moscow, Russia.
"Draumkvedet" is a Norwegian visionary poem, probably dated from the late medieval age. It is one of the best known medieval ballads in Norway. The first written versions are from Lårdal and Kviteseid in Telemark in the 1840s.
Gary Kulesha is a Canadian composer, pianist, conductor, and educator. Since 1995, he has been Composer Advisor to the Toronto Symphony Orchestra. He has been Composer-in-Residence with the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony (1988–1992) and the Canadian Opera Company (1993–1995). He was awarded the National Arts Centre Orchestra Composer Award in 2002. He currently teaches on the music faculty at the University of Toronto.
Wayne Brewster Barlow was an American composer of classical music. He was also a professor of music, organist, and choir director.
Cecilie Ore is a Norwegian composer.
Ivana Stefanović is a Serbian composer.
Gunnar Sønstevold was a Norwegian composer. He was born in Elverum, and married composer Maj Sønstevold in 1941. He composed orchestral works, vocal music, chamber music, and music to a number of plays, ballets and films. He headed the Music Department of the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation/Television from 1966 to 1974. He was awarded Filmkritikerprisen in 1955, for the film Det brenner i natt!. He received the Arts Council Norway music prize in 1972, and Radioteatret's honorary prize in 1987.
Alfred Janson was a Norwegian pianist and composer. He was born in Oslo as the son of sculptor Gunnar Janson and pianist Margrethe Gleditsch, and was brother of journalist Mette Janson. He was first married to actress and singer Grynet Molvig and later to Berit Gustavsen. He made his piano debut in 1962. Among his early compositions is the piano piece November from 1962 and the orchestral Vuggesang from 1963. He composed the ballet Mot solen for the Bergen International Festival in 1969, and in 1991 he was the festival's principal composer.
Philippe Capdenat is a French composer and academic teacher. First a mining engineer, he started composing avant-garde music, but turned to chamber music, music for the stage and vocal music, using traditional instruments. He has been a teacher at several French universities and conservatories.
Kåre Kolberg was a Norwegian composer, organist and music critic.
Ragnhild Berstad is a Norwegian contemporary composer.
Joseph Phibbs is an English composer of orchestral, choral and chamber music. He has also composed for theatre, both in the UK and Japan. Since 1998 he has written regularly to commissions for Festivals, for private sponsors, and for the BBC, which has broadcast premieres of his orchestral and chamber works from the Proms and elsewhere. His works have been given premieres in Europe, the United States and the Far East, and he has received prestigious awards, including most recently a British Composer Award, and a Library of Congress Serge Koussevitzky Music Foundation Award. Many of his works have been premiered by leading international musicians, including Dame Evelyn Glennie, Esa-Pekka Salonen, Leonard Slatkin, Sakari Oramo, Vasily Petrenko, Gianandrea Noseda, and the Belcea Quartet.