Introducing Britta Byström | US Debut January 6th in Detroit
4th January 2018
Britta Byström, one of Sweden's most gifted composing talents, will have her music performed in the United States for the very first time January 6-7, when the Detroit Symphony Orchestra and conductor James Gaffigan give the world premiere of her composition Many, Yet One. This piece was commissioned under the auspices of Byström's Elaine Lebenbom Memorial Award for Female Composers, which in past years has gone to the likes of Sarah Kirkland Snider and Missy Mazzoli.
Consisting of seven musical scenes linked by gamelan-like unisons, Many, Yet One thusly takes its title from the Indonesian national anthem. Byström deepens the gamelan connection throughout, with extensive use of bells, gongs, and metallophones. Taking cue from American mavericks such as Charles Ives and Harry Partch, the final musical picture layers each musical bridge on top of the other to striking effect.
A student of Pär Lindgren and 2018 Grawemeyer laureate Bent Sørensen, Byström's music is poetic and impressionistic, often drawing influence from non-musical artists like Italo Calvino (Invisible Cities) and Yayoi Kusama (Infinite Rooms). Byström's catalog includes various chamber music, vocal music, and opera, but she adores writing for orchestra above all else. Those who have performed her music include the BBC Symphony Orchestra, the Gürzenich Orchestra, the Norwegian Radio Orchestra, and the International Youth Wind Orchestra.
See below for a Spotify playlist of Byström's music, as well as a short documentary profiling the composer at work, and some live performance video. Many, Yet One will be live-streamed on January 7 at 3PM EST, and archived on Detroit's essential YouTube channel shortly thereafter.
Please join Music Sales Classical in wishing Britta a warm welcome to the States, and peruse the many works available for US premiere in her catalog.
Byström documentary | Performance: A Study in Scarlet | Performance: Lux Aeterna