ANDERS NORDENTOFT (b.1957): Light Imprisoned for Cello and Sinfonietta, Dance of Separation for String Sextet, Cathedral for Solo Cello, Pointed Out and Moment for Clarinet, Violin, Cello and Piano, Atrani for Solo Violin, HillShapes-WindStillness for Viola and Piano.
Catalogue Number: 08Q079
Description: Two elements are especially important in Nordentoft's mature music; music of propulsive rhythmic insistence, as exemplified in the Totentanz-like Dance, and a floating, dreamlike atmosphere, harmonically free and ambiguous, full of rich, glowing color, as in the miniature cello concerto Light Imprisoned, in which the solo instrument's persistent high harmonics suggest an ethereal radiance, especially in the ecstatic, elegaic slow central movement. The extended cello solo Cathedral explores the expressive potential of the instrument even further, its glissandi and textural gestures evoking the vast spaces the composer associates with the instrument's rich timbre. Pointed Out, the most recent piece here, presents a wealth of timbral and harmonic variety, with solo and sub-ensembles playing fragments which coalesce in the final, propulsive, tonally coherent movement for all the players, like the pattern revealed when abstract puzzle pieces are assembled. Atrani and HillShapes are both impressions of landcsape, in long, eloquent string lines, the latter with extremely subtle piano accompaniment, highly expressive and evocative through a wide diversity of technical subtleties. Moment is for the same forces as Pointed Out, but is more rhythmically and tonally stable, as tended to characterise the composer's earlier pieces. Henrik Brendstrup (cello), Århus Sinfonietta, Copenhagen Classic; Søren K. Hansen (conductor).