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Hans Abrahamsen

Publisher: Edition Wilhelm Hansen

Walden (1978)
Wilhelm Hansen
Works for 2-6 Players
Year Composed
11 Minutes

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Programme Note
Hans Abrahamsen Walden (1978)
Walden for wind quintet was written in 1978 and commissioned by the Funen Wind Quintet. The title is taken from the American philosopher and poet Henry David Thoreau’s novel from 1854 about living in the woods, which Thoreau did for two years.

His stay there was an experiment, an attempt to strip away all the artificial needs imposed by society and rediscover man’s lost unity with nature. In that particular sense his novel is a documentation of social inadequacy and a work of poetry (Utopia) as well.

All thought Thoreau himself never completed any actual social analysis he was way ahead of his own time in his perception of the economy and cyclic character of Nature, today known as ecology. His ideas are particularly relevant now that pollution caused by society has reached alarming proportions.

Walden was written in a style of re-cycling and “new simplicity”. A lot of superfluous material has been peeled away in order to give space to different qualities such as identity and clarity. Various layers are encountered in the quintet such as the organic (growth, flowering, Decay), concretism (mechanical patterns) and finally the descriptive (distant horn calls and other ghost-like music of the past enter our consciousness like a dream). Walden consist of four movements.

In 1995 another version for reed quintet was written to the Calefax Reed Quintet.

Hans Abrahamsen

  • Ensemble
    Scandinavian Wind Quintet
  • Ensemble
    London Sinfonietta
    Oliver Knussen
  • 23 SEP 2016
    Værkets Koncertsal, Randers, Denmark
    The Danish Sinfonietta
  • 07 OCT 2015
    Potsdam, Germany
    Kammerakademie Potsdam
  • 30 NOV 2014
    DR Koncerthuset, Copenhagen, Denmark
    DR SymfoniOrkestrets Blæserkvintet
  • 23 NOV 2014
    The Cell, New York, USA
    Ensemble Mise-En
  • 10 MAY 2014
    Vale of Glamorgan Festival 2014
    Norwegian Church Arts Centre, Cardiff
    Ensemble MidtVest/ Flautisti
  • 24 NOV 2013
    Konservatoriets Koncertsal, Odense, Denmark
    Ensemble MidtVest
  • 18 NOV 2013
    Lemvig Musikskole, Lemvig, Denmark
    Ensemble MidtVest

    Other Dates:
    19 November - KunstCentret Silkeborg Bad, Silkeborg, Denmark
    20 November - Folkets Hus, Struer, Denmark
    22 November - Musikværket, Nykøbing Mors, Denmark
    24 November - Syddansk Musikkonservatorium, Odense, Denmark
  • 02 NOV 2013
    Wigmore Hall, London
    Aurora Orchestra
    Nicholas Collon, conductor
  • 15 MAR 2013
    Mainly New: Hans Abrahamsen
    Duke's Hall, London
    Christopher Austin, conductor
  • 12 NOV 2012
    Denis Arnold Hall, Faculty of Music, Oxford University, England
    Ensemble Isis
  • 02 DEC 2011
    Heerlen, Holland
    Calefax Reed Quintet

    Other Dates:
    14 February 2012 - Tilburg, Holland
    14 April 2012 - Concertgebouw, Amsterdam
    18 April 2012 - Wigmore Hall, London
    19 April 2012 - Antwerp, Belgium
    13 April 2012 - Eindhoven, Holland
    3 May 2012 - Muziekgebouw aan 't IJ, Amsterdam
  • 12 OCT 2011
    Esbjerg, Denmark
    Esbjerg Ensemble
  • 20 AUG 2011
    Thy Chamber Music Festival
    Hurup, Thy, Denmark
    Mira Magrill, Nermis Mieses, Cecilia Kang, Stacie Mickens, Eric Rutherford
  • 06 NOV 2009
    Det Fynske Musikkonservatorium, Odense, Denmark
    Musikhøst Sinfonietta
    Christopher Austin, conductor
  • 11 OCT 2007
    Ultima 2007
    Oslo Konserthus, Lille Sal, Norway
    Fannaråkken Blåsekvintett

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