Erik JØRGENSEN (b. 1912)
Confrontations. Variazioni for Piano. Improvisations for Wind Quintet.
Piece for String Quartet. Introduction and Presto for Saxophone
Orchestra/Tamás Vetö; Ulrich Stark (piano); Danish Wind Quintet;
Kontra String Quartet; Danish Saxophone Quartet.
Dacapo 8.224217 [DDD]
Jørgensen was one of the first Danish composers to take up Schoenbergian
dodecaphony. He has been at the forefront of the Danish avant-garde, having
attended the ISCM World Music Days in 1960 and the summer course at Darmstadt
This Dacapo disc offers the ideal introduction to his music. It balances
examples of solo, chamber and orchestral genres to make a satisfying hour's
listening. Confrontations is a major orchestral work from the late
Sixties. It is a solemn processional, laden with tensions and dominated by
inevitable, persistent rhythms.
Variazioni for piano (1966) offers the starkest of contrasts. The
sensitive Ulrich Stark projects its crystalline quality well, the experience
heightened by the clear piano sound. The rather robust Improvisations (1971)
presents a series of contrasting episodes, but it is in the fragmentary,
otherworldly Piece for String Quartet (1964/5) that Jørgensen seems
most at home.
Jazzy allusions break into the Introduction and Presto of 1995: there
even seems to be a reference to Cole Porter's Anything goes at one
point in the Presto!. The Danish Saxophone Quartet seems to have a whale
of a time. The cheeky ending rounds off the disc perfectly.
Stimulating, involving and never less than fascinating performances throughout
offer the highest dedication to Jørgensen's cause. Strongly recommended.