Canadian premiere: Sept. 29, 2004 – Victoria BC
Weeping White Room
Canadian premiere: Feb. 24, 2009 – Victoria BC
US premiere: Mar. 5, 2007 – New York City (Scandinavia House)
Canadian premiere: May 24, 2009
The most significant composer of his generation in Denmark, Bent Sørensen, born in 1958, won the very prestigious Music Prize of the Nordic Council in 1995 – only the third Danish composer to do so. Sørensen’s music is created with an extremely delicate ear, without in any way giving a small-scale or minimalist impression. Even large ensembles and forms are set in a refined mixture of timbres and thronging activity that vibrates like a microcosm. With his magnificent technical skills – for example in the violin concerto Sterbende Gärten – he can build large-scale works over the obscure and silent.
“Sirenengesang was composed in the spring of 1994 with support from NOMUS. The music is not a romantic reflection on presumed siren songs. The title expresses an impalpable conception, which manifests itself in dense quartertone-distorted melodies and manic, almost frozen, tone-repetitions. Sometimes the music becomes static screams, sometimes there is room for small naive fragments of melody. By the end of the piece, a fragment from the ‘Angel-Duet’ of my The echoing garden emerges. Sirenengesang is dedicated to Per Nørgård.” – Bent Sørensen
As usual the title came first – “The Weeping White Room”. But where is that room? And what is it? Who is weeping? I am not sure! The piece might be full of traces of some unwritten music from the opera “Under the Sky” I am working on at the moment. It is commissioned by WDR and Cikada and is dedicated every member of Cikada. – Bent Sørensen, 2002
The title The Deserted Churchyards refers to several churchyards along the western coast of northern Jutland, which long ago were safely inland, but which now are being eaten up by the threatening sea. The title, however, is only an association and it is impossible to explain the more definite connection between this windy area and my piece – Bent Sørensen
Shadowland refers to a blurred ‘Landscape’ of shadows, where small shadows are formed behind other shadows, and where the outlines are constantly disintegrating.