Eva conducts The Rite of Spring

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Date Location Price
29 Sep 2022 » 19:30 » Thursday Eldborg | Harpa 2.900 - 8.700 kr.
  • Program

    Anna Þorvaldsdóttir CATAMORPHOSIS
    Veronique Vaka Gemæltan (world premiere)
    Daníel Bjarnason Bow to String
    Igor Stravinsky The Rite of Spring

  • Conductor

    Eva Ollikainen

  • Soloist

    Sæunn Þorsteinsdóttir

An Icelandic performance of Stravinsky's The Rite of Spring – one of the most admired and influential orchestral works of the 20th century – is always a major event. Composer-conductor Pierre Boulez referred to the Rite as “the birth certificate of contemporary music.” The work describes a sacred ritual in which one of a group of virgins is selected to dance herself to death, ensuring that spring will come.  The Rite of Spring makes for a powerful close to this concert, whose first half focuses on Icelandic contemporary music.

Anna Thorvaldsdóttir is among the most influential composers working today, and her music has been performed by leading orchestras the world over, including her CATAMORPHOSIS, a joint commission of the Berlin Philharmonic, the New York Philharmonic, the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra, and the Iceland Symphony Orchestra. It has taken the world by storm ever since its premiere in Berlin in January 2021. Kirill Petrenko, Chief Conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic, described it as “a tremendous score.”

Critics have been unrestrained in their enthusiasm for Veronique Vaka's music. British music magazine Gramophone has heaped praise upon her, and she has been nominated for the Nordic Prize and the Icelandic Music Award. She is known for seeking inspiration in the natural world. This programme introduces a new work, Gemæltan.

Cellist Sæunn Þorsteinsdóttir, Artist-in-Residence with the ISO for the 2022-2023 season, commissioned and premiered Daníel Bjarnason's Bow to String and then recorded it with the composer at the podium for the disc Processions. An in-demand soloist worldwide, Sæunn has been described as “charismatic” by The New York Times.