Sakral / Sacred

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    Hymn

    The composer Henrik Dahlgren writes:

    ”Edgar Allan Poe’s poem appealed to me since it is so versatile. At the same time as it is expressing a hope for a brighter future it has a darkness and seriousness over it.
    The text originates from a song that is sung by the character Morella in Poe’s short story with the same name, but it has since then been published as a stand alone poem with the title ’A Catholic Hymn’. In a letter, Poe crosses out the word ’catholic’ and thus leaves us with ’A Hymn’.
    The text, which had been in one of my drawers for many years was perfect when my former mentor and now good friend Anita Andersson asked for a piece for one of her youth choirs. Anita and I both new that we wanted a somewhat ’semi-sacred’ text and it was important for us that the piece worked both during sacred occasions and as concert music. Poe’s poem was perfect!For me personally, the text evokes an inner picture. A picture of a dramatic coast line where a storm slowly builds up in the horizon and where a woman sings the hymn to mother Mary. At first very clear but later more clouded by the sound of the storm. At last the storm passes and all that is left is the sound of the waves against the shore.
    Poe’s poem is timeless and will unfortunately always be urgent in its hope for a brighter future.” – Henrik Dahlgren

    Henrik Dahlgren is a Swedish composer, born 1991. He has been studying at the Academy Of Music in Malmö with Prof. Rolf Martinsson and the Royal College Of Music in London with Dr. Haris Kittos. Henrik started his musical career as a drummer and has ever since worked in a very wide range of different genres and styles, both as a performer and as a composer. – ”To evolve from a hard rock loving drummer to a contemporary composer has not been an easy path to travel but when I first discovered the beauty and pureness of the human voice and the choir, I found MY instrument. That’s where I belong!” – Henrik Dahlgren

    Prisa Herren

    Psaltarens 150:e psalm, med sina klingande cymbaler, strängaspel och flöjter, är naturligtvis en högst lämplig text för en jublande lovsång. Så här skriver tonsättaren Emil Råberg själv:

    ”Försök gärna att plocka fram de onomatopoetiska uttrycken för respektive instrument i texten. Jag ser varje modulering och mediantisk förflyttning som en tonartshöjning, så att musiken ständigt stegras som ett enda långt crescendo.”

    Ur vinterns mörker

    En mjuk och stillsam sång om ljuset som stiger ur vinterns mörker. Textens innerlighet har tolkats på ett självklart sätt i musiken.

    ”Efter att ha varit pianist vid julkonserter i stor mängd fanns en längtan hos mig att skriva en julsång för kör. Men jag kände inte att jag hade orden för det och hittade heller inte någon text jag särskilt fastnade för. Jag skickade frågan till Joseph Halldorf som jag tidigare samarbetat med, och när jag så småningom fick hans text i min hand var det som om musiken redan fanns där i orden. Jag hoppas att du som jag i julens så välbekanta berättelse ska få se en glimt av något helt nytt.” – Ingunn Ligaarden

    Maria durch ein Dornwald ging

    ”Maria durch ein Dornwald ging är en gammal traditionell ’makaronisk’ vers, alltså diktning som blandar olika språk, vanlig bland studenter som skämt under renässans och barock. Just den här texten på tyska och grekiska trycktes för första gången 1850, och då med sju verser.
    Det var tonsättningar av andra traditionella makaroniska carols, In dulci jubilo och framför allt There is no rose of such virtue, som gav mig inspiration till detta stycke, den kompositoriska utmaningen att få klangen och känslan i de olika språken att smälta samman till en enhet.

    Maria durch ein Dornwald ging uruppfördes av vokalensemblen ARS LONGA i Enskede kyrka den 17 december 2017.” – David Åberg

    I denna ljuva sommartid

    En quodlibet-sats med en traditionell koralmelodi från Malung som genomgående stämma. Kring denna vävs fragment av ”Uti vår hage” in och till sist också första versen av Gershwins ”Summertime”. Ett läckert och välklingande arrangemang av Sara Kollberg Clarke, ledare för Chalmers Kammarkör i Göteborg.

    Veri floris

    Veri floris sub figura
    quem produxit radix pura
    cleri nostri pia cura
    florem fecit mysticum.

    Beneath the figure of a true flower,
    which was produced by a pure root,
    the holy care of our clergy
    has fashioned a mystic flower.

    ”The notes on the origin of the Latin lyrics are as follows: ’Anonymous conductus: Notre Dame, France 13th century. From manuscript: Florence, Biblioteca Medicea Laurenziana, pluteo 29.1.’ – The title refers to ’the flower of truth’, and the lyrics compare faith to a vibrant red flower.” – Anders Jormin

    Veri floris is recorded by the Polish choir Camerata Silesia and Anders Jormin: Ama, Footprint Records FRCD 094.

    Radius solaris

    Radius solaris, descendit ut pluvia …

    Sunbeams fall – as if they were rain.
    You, who received the blessing that abides within,
    make the world beautiful for all God’s children.

    ”The Latin lyrics used in Radius solaris stem from an old, less-used version of Ave maris stella, an essential prayer in the Catholic church. The composition honours medieval vocal music as well as the later passacaglia form.

    The solo part, notated here for the violin, can also be played by a clarinet, an alto flute, a cello or an English horn. The piece can also be performed without an instrumental solo.” – Anders Jormin

    Radius solaris is recorded by the Polish choir Camerata Silesia and Anders Jormin: Ama, Footprint Records FRCD 094.

    Sicut cervus

    ”The church in the Stockholm borough of Hjorthagen, a name that translates literally into “deer enclosure”, has a statue of a deer by the altar. This statue represents the thirsty animal of Psalm 42, and a setting of this psalm is performed on Sundays as a communion anthem. This piece was commissioned by the current organist and choir director of the church, Karin Oldgren.
    The setting aims to capture the sweet longing for the Lord depicted by the lyrics.” Pär Olofsson, musician in Oscarskyrkan, Stockholm

    Ubi caritas

    No. 3 from Three Latin motets. A six parts a cappella setting of the old Ubi caritas text from the 7th century.

    ”The Three latin motets were composed for the communion service at Oscarskyrkan in Stockholm. They have also been performed at concerts and at various choral competitions throughout Europe.
    The pieces make up a small suite, where the hymns by Thomas Aquinas frame the ancient Ubi caritas as a centerpiece. Beginning with the epic multi-verse setting of Tantum ergo and ending with the dance-like ritornello structure of O sacrum convivium, the suite makes up a nice ternary form with the warm stillness of Ubi caritas in the middle.
    While composing, I aimed to evoke the antiquity of the texts by assigning them to mock-plainchant melodies and then treating them in a cantus firmus setting. All three pieces are written in a neo-romantic style.

    The Ubi caritas is an ancient hymn associated with Maundy Thursday and the service of the washing of the feet. It is believed to have its roots in the earliest Christian church, before the mass was formalized. The service of Maundy Thursday revolves around the Last Supper and the washing of the disciples’ feet by Jesus Christ.” Pär Olofsson, musician in Oscarskyrkan, Stockholm.

    See also Tantum ergo and O sacrum convivium by Pär Olofsson.

    O sacrum convivium

    No. 2 from Three Latin motets. A four parts a cappella setting of the old O sacrum convivium text by Thomas Aquinas.

    ”The Three latin motets were composed for the communion service at Oscarskyrkan in Stockholm. They have also been performed at concerts and at various choral competitions throughout Europe.
    The pieces make up a small suite, where the hymns by Thomas Aquinas frame the ancient Ubi caritas as a centerpiece. Beginning with the epic multi-verse setting of Tantum ergo and ending with the dance-like ritornello structure of O sacrum convivium, the suite makes up a nice ternary form with the warm stillness of Ubi caritas in the middle.
    While composing, I aimed to evoke the antiquity of the texts by assigning them to mock-plainchant melodies and then treating them in a cantus firmus setting. All three pieces are written in a neo-romantic style.

    The prose text of O sacrum convivium is a celebration of the holy sacrament, describing it as a banquet. The piece depicts a fairly joyous meal with dance-like rhythms and mock-antiphonal features that evoke the murmur of conversation.” Pär Olofsson, musician in Oscarskyrkan, Stockholm.

    See also Tantum ergo and Ubi caritas by Pär Olofsson.