The Stavanger Symphony Orchestra (SSO) is back with an exciting album titled, Gisle Kverndokk – Symphonic Dances. Ken-David Masur conducts the SSO through five original compositions by composer Kverandakk that are reflective, celebratory and full of grooves and interesting colors. In 2013, the Norwegian Ministry of Culture challenged the Stavanger Symphony Orchestra (SSO) to celebrate the 200th anniversary of the Norwegian Constitution by addressing the concept of cultural diversity. SSO commissioned a work by Gisle Kverndokk, who created Symphonic Dances by weaving together a diverse musical narrative based on folk music from the different ethnic groups living in the Stavanger area. Kverndokk (1967) is a Norwegian composer that is known for his work as a composer of operas and musicals that has also written a wide range of music, from chamber music, songs, church music, vocal music and music for dance, theatre, and film. For this project, he focused on a variety of folk music in the Stavanger area, which resulted in a series of compositions that included folk music from: China, Cuba, Afghanistan, Venezuela, Eritrea, Greece, Poland, Sweden, Iran, Madagascar, Kurdistan and Norway. His use of rhythms and attention to the pulse through the five compositions is marvelous. All five movements have a dancing quality to them that is expertly performed and conducted, this is a real treat of original music that has depth and copious substance. That’s the short of it!
Gisle Kverndokk - Symphonic Dances
The Sorrow of Loneliness
Songs about the Sea
Dance in the Night
Weddings and Funerals
Release Date: August 15, 2018
Wonderful playing and conducting. Kverndokk’s music is a true reflection of heritage through the lens of a twenty-first century composer. This brings the heritage of classical music, folk songs and the vivid imagination of Kverndokk together in one project. Bravo!