Psalm 103

Henrik Dahlgren           

36.00 SEK

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Winner of the 1st prize in Bo Ejeby Förlag’s composition award 2021.

Juryns prismotivering: En komposition som med ett visst mått av minimalistiska influenser, ett begränsat, väl hushållat tonmaterial och ett effektivt rytmiskt bruk på ett självklart sätt tolkar den gamla psaltartexten.

 

The life of mortals is like grass, they flourish like a flower of the field; the wind blows over it and it is gone, and its place remembers it no more.

”This piece came together in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic. And while watching our society fall apart, I was struck by the reality of how insignificant we are as a species. The passage from Psalm 103 comparing mortals to grass has been on my mind for quite some time, and I have been looking for an opportunity to set it to music. I choose to focus on the first line “Homo, sicut fenum dies ejus”, in English, “The life of mortals is like grass”, so fitting for the ongoing pandemic.
The piece is structured around the idea of canon and repetition, and the motifs are sung throughout different parts as a soft wind sweeping through the choir … A sparse compositional texture evolves, depicting the fragility of the human race. Preferably this piece should be sung in a venue with a great deal of reverb, making the single voices blend into a homogenous whole. I could easily see how the choir could be placed around the audience or spread out in a way that would make the different motifs come from different directions.” – Henrik Dahlgren

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