• Sebastian Fagerlund
  • Stonework (2015)
    (for orchestra)

  • Henry Litolff’s Verlag GmbH & Co. KG (World)
  • 3(III:pic).3(III:ca).0+2bb-cl+bcl.2+cbn/0+4f-hn.0+3ctpt.3.1/timp.2perc/pf.hp/str
  • 14 min
    • 26th August 2024, Rathausplatz, Vienna, Austria
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Programme Note

Stonework was commissioned jointly by the Bergen and Tampere Philharmonic Orchestras to mark the 250th anniversary of the Norwegian orchestra and it was premiered in Bergen with Edward Gardner conducting on November 26. It was first heard in Finland in Tampere on November 27, with Santtu-Matias Rouvali conducting, and on the same day in Sweden during the Bergen Philharmonic’s tour to Gothenburg. Stonework is above all a feast for a large virtuoso orchestra. Its title has made its mark on the music. But while works referring to stone usually concentrate on pounding percussions and monolithic orchestral slabs, Fagerlund does not so much measure the strength of his stone, its weight and permanence. Rather, his orchestra sows the seeds of a myriad hues and features evocative silence just as much as to thunder. The opening, with robust yet warbling wind figures serves as a reminder that stone is actually quite a malleable material. Its irregular rhythms suggest the dynamic role of stone in cultural and military history. The Stone Age was a period in ancient history, but in Stonework it is also part of the present day and distant worlds. Stone is often thought of as a dead substance, but in the music of Fagerlund it lives and pulses and generates seamless continuity. Fagerlund alternates, overlaps and mixes his motifs into a convoluted shape that finally builds up to a wild, fortissimo climax. In the last bars the music dissolves into a void, as if to remind us that geological history is much, much longer than the story of mankind.




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