1-4 Ib Nørholm: “Quartet for Saxophones”
5 Ib Nørholm: “Impuls”
6-9 Lars Heegaard: “Four Square Dances”
10 Kenneth Knudsen: “Oh Dear Part I”
11 H.H. Nordstrøm: “Birds of Susaa Are Dreaming..”
12 Fredrik Lundin: “Descent”
13 Svend H. Nielsen: Whilse Angels sleep”
Copenhagen Saxophone Quartet with guest: Frans Hansen – percussion
“Ib Nørholm (1931-) is one of the most famous living Danish composers. Parts of his numerous production includes vocal music, ten symphonies and chamber music ( among these two pieces for saxophone quartet and one for saxophone quartet and piano ).
At their debut June 1998 CSQ played a piece by Nørholm called “Quartet For Saxophones” which is his first work using these instruments. The musicians in CSQ love to play this piece because of its lyrical expression. They also find a challenge in the performance itself: The composer refers to this by naming both the first and the last movement “Development”. The fact that the ending of the piece also develops creates a motion that is unending. Thus the music “lives” on until the next performance.
Nørholm attended the concert in 1998 and composed shortly after a new piece for saxophone quartet which he dedicated CSQ. This music is called “Impuls”. It is shorter than the previous piece and it consists of only one movement in comparison to the four movements of his first work of this kind. “Impuls” is however by no means less challenging or any less interesting than “Quartet For Saxophones” The listener gets a chance to experience a journey through a wide range of emotions.
CSQ has played both works throughout the years. In may 2002 they performed Nørholms piece for saxophone quartet and piano “A Patchwork In Pink” with the Danish concert pianist Amalie Malling. This was for CSQ a great experience. Not only was it exciting to work with an instrument so versatile that it brought new timbre to the sound of the ensemble. But Malling showed great insight in the poetical universe of Ib Nørholm wich inspired and lead the music to new and for the quartet unknown places.
“Quartet For Saxophones” and “Impuls” has been recorded by CSQ on a cd which includes exclusively contemporary Danish music. Several Danish composers are represented. Among them is Svend Hvidtfelt Nielsen (1958-). He is a former student of Ib Nørholm, has been a rock musician, has graduated from the Academy of Music as an organ player, has as degree in philosophy and much more. This makes his music like a coat of many colors.
On the cd CSQ plays with percussionist Franz Hansen a piece by Hvidtfelt called “While Angels Sleep”. This is music which they have performed several times in so different places from a festival for contemporary music in the Danish National Radio to an experimenting concert in Copenhagen Jazzhouse.
This piece gives an almost violent opening that slowly fades into a bright clarification. From horror to beauty.
This work can also be performed without percussion.”