Reidar Bakke – paper 2009

Presented at the Grieg Conference in Berlin May 14, 2009

Reidar Bakke, Norway
Associate professor, Department of Music
Norwegian University for Science and Technology

Over the course of his career as a composer, Edvard Grieg (1843-1907) penned quite a few choral works. Grieg knew how to write for choirs, as the human voice was a medium he had a good command of not only as a composer, but also as a conductor. During his career he was the musical director of several choirs, and his experiences as a conductor gave him a strong practical knowledge of the range and capacity of the human voice. In writing for choirs he also learnt quite a lot from the pieces he composed for solo voice. Not least the close relation to his wife Nina and her performances of his songs gave him a very good insight into writing for voices. His choral compositions are clearly idiomatically written. To choirs of a certain standard his songs are easy to perform, and they also appeal to a broad spectrum of audience types, which means that many of his choral compositions have become very popular.

Download the whole paper here
Paper Reidar Bakke 2009

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