Danish String Quartet: Nordic Summer

Danish String Quartet: Nordic Summer

A Nordic summer, as the Danish String Quartet tells Apple Music Classical, is a place where “time feels limitless and boundaries non-existent in this landscape; where traditions are meant to be developed and the distinction between day and night is blurred by the almost never-ending summer light.” For this colourful playlist, the quartet has chosen music from what they call their “musical backyard, situated in the outskirts of the European classical music scene and influenced by strong local music traditions.” Predominantly, you’ll hear two of the strongest of those traditions, vocal and string music. The Danish String Quartet’s countryman Nielsen’s “Tit er jeg glad” (“Often I am happy”) features the Danish Radio Girls’ Choir alongside the Danish String Quartet, who add in “Brudestykke”, a fiddle tune from the Danish island of Fanø. Norway is the next port of call for a performance by the Oslo Chamber Choir of “Myllargutens bruremarsj” in a choral arrangement of Norwegian composer Grieg’s piano version of a traditional fiddle melody. “It’s beautiful to think about how the simple material of the lonely fiddler ended up resonating through the voices of a whole choir, via the skilled craftsmanship of Grieg,” explain the Quartet. Traditional folk and classical mix once again in Bach’s Sonata No. 3, arranged for nyckelharpa, recorder and guitar, while a movement from Sibelius’ rarely performed orchestral suite Rakastava adds a Finnish touch.

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