Schola Cantorum will perform along with an unusual chamber ensemble Requiem by Alfred Schnittke as well as Ave verum corpus and Diliges Dominum (premiere) by Sigurð Sævarsson, in Hallgrímskirkja, January 27th. at 4pm. The concert is in collaboration with the Reykjavík Dark Music Days and the Hallgrimskirkja Friends of the Arts Society.
Requiem by Alfred Schnittke is a melancholy composition. The real-life sound of the psalm fluctuates between the inward reflection of rock and theatrical musical nuances with the support of electric bass and guitar with an unexpected input from the percussion section. It is exciting to bring together an Icelandic professional group and ensemble in the 44-year-old composition where the old Requiem text is conveyed effectively as the music is both classic and modern with the influence of rock and theater music.
Icelandic composer Sigurður Sævarsson (b.1963) has recent years been productive in writing choir music, both a capella and with instruments as well. He is known for his clear, minimalistic style and luminous texture. “I want the listener to hear every note and where it is going – that way, there is also more chance of the text coming across clearly.”
Ave verum corpus and Diliges Dominum are both composed in 2018. They are a part of a series of a cappella choir works by Sævarsson written that year to Latin text.
Schola Cantorum Reykjavicensis was founded in 1996 by the conductor Hörður Áskelsson, the cantor at Hallgrímskirkja (Hallgrim’s Church) in Reykjavík. Schola Cantorum has from the very start played an important role in the Icelandic music scene with a repertoire that consists mainly of renaissance, baroque and contemporary music including numerous premier performances of works by Icelandic composers.
Schola Cantorum has given concerts in Norway, Sweden, Finland, Italy, Spain, Germany, Switzerland, France and Japan. In 2017 Schola Cantorum was invited by Los Angeles Philharmonic to sing 4 concerts in Walt Disney Concert Hall during Reykjavík Festival in LA.
The choir can be heard in many recordings including complete choral/orchestral works of Icelandic composer Jón Leifs issued by Swedish label BIS. The choir has also worked with artists such as Björk, Sigur Rós, Jóhann Jóhannson, and Swedish experimental band Wildbirds & Peacedrums. Schola Cantorum appears widely on the musical spectrum. For instance the choir sings in the soundtrack of the action-adventure video game God of War released by Sony in April 2018.
Schola Cantorum was appointed by Iceland Music Awards as the Performer of the year 2016.
Guitar: Daníel Friðrik Böðvarsson
Organ: Björn Steinar Sólbergsson
Piano: Anna Guðný Guðmundsdóttir
Celesta: Helga Bryndís Magnúsdóttir
Electric bass: Richard Korn
Percussion: Steef van Oousterhout, Eggert Pálson, Pétur Grétarsson og Frank Aarnink
Trombone: Carlos Caro Aguilera
Trumpet: Eiríkur Örn Pálsson
Soloists: Thelma Hrönn Sigurdórsdóttir, Lilja Dögg Gunnarsdóttir, Guðmundur Vignir Karlsson, Rakel Edda Guðmundsdóttir and Vigdís Sigurðardóttir
Conductor: Hörður Áskelsson
Ticket price: 4.500 kr. Ticket sales on Tix.is and in Hallgríms church. Open daily 9am-4:30pm