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Violinist Eldbjørg Hemsing's Releases New Album, "Arctic"

Released on Sony Classical, this concept album explores both the beauty and the fragility of the Arctic Circle


Norwegian violinist Eldbjørg Hemsing's newest release, "Arctic," was conceived as a musical journey through the beauty of the Arctic Circle. With the release, Hemsing aims to call attention to its largely unexplored ecosystem currently falling victim to climate change.

Hemsing describes the album as being akin to a film score devoid of images — one that creates a film-like environment in the mind's eye of her listeners.

The disc not only explores the music of established film composers such as Jacob Shea and Frode Fjellheim, but also contains new work and arrangements of celebrated Scandinavian composers — Ola Gjeilo, Einojuhani Rautavaara, Ole Bull, and Edvard Grieg.

Many of Hemsing's previous recordings cover relatively well-known repertoire, such as the Shostakovich Violin Concerto No. 1 and the Grieg Violin Sonatas. She has also recorded the violin concerto — titled Fire Ritual — by Chinese-American composer Tan Dun, of which she was the dedicatee.

Her newest project was recorded together with the Arctic Philharmonic Orchestra in Bodø, a Norwegian town within the Arctic Circle.

"The Arctic is often misrepresented as stark and uninhabitable wasteland," Hemsing said. "Yet it’s a region of matchless beauty abounding in life, one that magically illustrates how all things cohere in fragile cycles.

"Arctic is a musical journey through this unique and endangered natural habitat. I want this project to show people how magnificent and deserving of protection this landscape is, and to point out the threat of climate change, which affects us all."

You can get the album, here, and listen to a track from the album, Ben Palmer's "Vårsøg," below:


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