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Symphonic Concerto for Violin and Orchestra

The forty minutes’ long ‘Symphonic Concerto for violin and orchestra’ was written in 1984. The world premier took place at an EBU- concert in Oslo 1985. It was performed by Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra, the commissioner of the concert, with its Konzertmeister, Stig Nilsson as a soloist, and Esa- Pekka Salonen as conductor.

After the premier, the Swedish music critic, Runar Mangs (Dagens Nyheter) wrote: “This concert is Thoresen’s most extensive piece until now; nevertheless, it is not a second too long.  It is a composition of great symphonic power, with grand, ponderous, slowly evolving and wonderfully alive and complex sound masses in a perfect dialogue with an equally warm and brilliantly vital solo part.  Spontaneously one thinks of the vast Norwegian mountain areas and a lonely human wanderer. However, what is described are the inner worlds of emotion and signification  - worlds of enormous proportions and immense heights that the lonely individual – the solo violin - traverses, reacts to, responds to and is merged with in its translation to individual expression. ... As the concert progressed the reason for its title “Symphonic Concerto” became evident – the emphasis is certainly on ‘symphonic’. With lucidity and eloquence the composer handles powerfully the great form; here we have got a new, great symphonic talent who, through the very format and very spirit of his language of sound reminds us of Sibelius.

It is only in moments of grace one could pray to be allowed to be present when such a wonderful and rare musical flower for the first time opens up and reveals itself to the greater world.”

 


 
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