ENSEMBLE MISE-EN | CONNECTIONS | Denmark: All Generations
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CONNECTIONS | Denmark: All Generations

Thursday, November 19, 2015, 8PM

Scandinavia House

58 Park Ave New York, NY 10016

Denmark: All Generations

Per Nørgård: Scintillation (1993, US premiere)
Hans Abrahamsen: Seks stykker (1984)
Bent Sørensen: The Hill of the Heartless Giant (2001)
Thomas Agerfeldt Olesen: Dedications (2000)
Simon Steen-Andersen: In spite of, and maybe even therefore (2007)

On Thursday, November 19 at 8PM, ensemble mise-en will perform works by five Danish composers at Scandinavia House as part of its CONNECTIONS series. Each concert in the CONNECTIONS series will detail, explore, and venture into the titular connections between artistic or cultural groups separated by location, tradition, or generation and how those very connections can forge unique emotional and psychological pathways through art. At this concert, the ensemble will perform the works of five living Danish composers representing each generation of new music artists working today. Exploring temporal distances rather than geographic ones makes “Denmark – All Generations” a novel concept even within a series striving to distinguish itself from the field.

The concert will feature Per Nørgård’s Scintillation, a piece whose instrumentation is divided into two groups–winds and strings–with a piano intermediating and whose sound evokes wavelike accelerations and decelerations as the two groups complement each other with “contrasting layers of tempo”; Hans Abrahamsen’s Seks stykker, which is based on his work Studies for Piano and features a trio comprised of violin, horn, and piano; his piece contains six movements from his Studies… that have been “deepened” so their moods appear more coherently; Bent Sørensen’s The Hill of the Heartless Giant, a piece for solo bass that is based on the ending of a fairy tale; Dedications by Thomas Agerfeldt Olesen, a trio for violin, cello, and piano; and Simon Steen-Andersen’s In spite of, and maybe even therefore, which consists of two different musical ideas that are being built and destroyed simultaneously.

As each composer to be featured is alive and working, the exciting possibility of open dialogue between performer and composer adds an exciting new dimension to any proposed program. This direct contact between artistic parties has been a hallmark of ensemble mise-en’s work over the past four seasons, seeking, as we do, to establish lasting working relationships with as many established and emerging artists as possible. The generous environs provided by Scandinavia House will ground the proceedings and provide a fitting context.

2015 is a milestone year in Danish music, being, as it is, the 150th anniversary of the birth of composer Carl Nielsen. Nielsen is, of course, widely considered one of, if not the, greatest and most important of Denmark’s cultural exports. His influence is still felt in the work of Europe’s greatest living symphonic composers and his legacy without question. And yet, even in a year such as this Danish music is, barring some notable exceptions and cursory nods, largely absent from the programs of New York City’s established performing arts organizations. This cultural landscape means that ensemble mise-en’s proposed “Denmark – All Generations” concert is remarkably unique; standing out amid a sea of performances that could otherwise be viewed as somewhat saturated.

Composer Moon Young HA is now in his fifth season as the artistic and chief executive director for ensemble mise-en. As the founder, Moon seeks to cultivate large­ scale composition projects such as this one. ensemble mise-en is a virtuoso ensemble dedicated to innovative musical performance and discovery of daring artistic paths. Championing cutting-edge contemporary composers, as well as framing classical collection in new contexts, mise-en inspires musical inquiry through pushing the boundaries of classical music with riveting performances that reach across genres and generations and transcend the confines of the traditional classical concert experience.

Tickets will be available at the door and can be purchased for $15 general admission or $10 for ASF members.

The 2015-16 CONNECTIONS series is supported by The Alice M. Ditson Fund and The Amphion Foundation.


This program is supported, in part, by public funds from the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the New York City Council.

This program is supported financially by DMFF (Dansk Music Publishers Association) through KODA’s Funds for cultural and social purposes.

This program is made possible, in part, with support from the Danish Composers’ Society’s Production Pool / KODA’s Cultural Funds.

This program is supported by Scandinavia House and the Consulate General of Denmark New York.