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Dark Music Days – Iceland Symphony Orchestra

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Each year, the Iceland Symphony takes part in the Dark Music Days, a festival of contemporary Icelandic music. This programme features three first performances, as well as other outstanding recent works. Þuríður Jónsdóttir’s flute concerto Flutter, written in 2008, is a masterful work that combines solo flute, orchestra, and cricket and grasshopper sounds. Italian flautist Mario Caroli, who specialises in contemporary performance, premiered the concerto in 2009 with magnificent results. Páll Ragnar Pálsson’s new concerto for flute and bassoon, Crevace, heard here for the first time. The concerto was written for the Iceland Symphony’s principal flautist, Hallfríður Ólafsdóttir and the Estonian bassoonist Martin Kuuskmann who has drawn international attention for his interpretation of new music which has earned him two Grammy nominations.

New works by María Huld Markan Sigfúsdóttir and Veronique Vaka will be premiered at the concert. Also receiving its first Icelandic performance is a new orchestral work by the Iceland Symphony’s composer-in-residence, Anna Thorvaldsdottir. It was written for the New York Philharmonic and premiered there in April 2018 under the baton of Esa-Pekka Salonen. In yet another indicator of Anna’s stature in the world of music, the Berlin Philharmonic will perform this new work just a few days prior to its Icelandic premiere.

Program change announcement: The Iceland Symphony Youth Orchestra and the Iceland Academy of the Arts Choir were planned to perform HandsFree by Anne Meredith at the concert, but due to circumstances beyond our control, the work has been withdrawn from the program.

Daníel Bjarnason

Iceland Symphony Orchestra
Hallfríður Ólafsdóttir
Martin Kuuskmann
Mario Caroli

  • Program

    Veronique Vaka Lendh

    María Huld Markan Sigfúsdóttir New work

    Þuríður Jónsdóttir Flutter, concerto for flute

    Páll Ragnar Pálsson Crevace, concerto for flute and bassoon

    Anna Þorvaldsdóttir Metacosmos