"Such mesmerizing talent is rare.... Whatever language, it was the group's astonishing range of sonic vocabulary... that thrilled the senses and sent an emotional message no listener could miss" (Washington Post)
One of Nordic Voices' main goals is to be in the forefront of research into vocal art. The group explores new vocal techniques and new ways of using the classically trained voice. The singers can produce a wide range of techniques, from refined classical sounds to Mongolian overtone singing. The group's talents were on display at Carnegie Hall's Weill Recital Hall in New York -- "an exquisite performance... a unique ensemble" Read the full review.
Read more in The New York Times.
In performance from Kyoto to New York, and from Munich to Toronto, Nordic Voices has plied a wide spectrum of musical expression, from plainchant to newly works commissioned from leading Norwegian composers, including both the most sacred of religious texts and the decidedly profane. The group's programming revolves around themes, for example historical figures or textual links, bringing the music to life in sometimes unexpected ways. Their path connects the extremes: Lassus rubs shoulders with Ligeti and Norwegian contemporary composer Henrik Hellstenius, and Dufay with Huber and Nystedt. In a recent programme, Nordic Voices made their first foray into the world of electronics, with works exploiting not only electronic amplification, but sampling, mixing and video-art.
Chandos released the Nordic Voices recording, 'Lamentations' in 2009 to quick critical acclaim: "sublime performances...Top class work from Norway's leading vocal ensemble." (Classic FM Magazine). The release tour included concerts in Oslo, Bergen and Haugesund in Norway, as well as Stockholm, Helsinki and London. Chandos has also released 'Reges terrae' - featuring 16th century music from the time of Carlos V - which was enthusiastically received and was nominated for the Norwegian Grammy Award (Spellemannprisen) in 2007; followed by "Djånki Don", featuring contemporary music by various Norwegian composers (also nominated, in 2008). The group's first CD, Sense and nonSense, was released on the Jonathan Digital label in 2002. The CD celebrates a focus on different approaches toward text in vocal music, from the use of abstract phonemes to pictorial storytelling. The group's latest recording, 'Himmelkvad' is “A marvelous disc of Norwegian folk-inspired music performed with extraordinary virtuosity by Nordic Voices” (HRAudioNet). Released in 2012, it includes the opus 42 of Lasse Thoresen, written especially for Nordic Voices, and which won the composer the very highly regarded Nordic Council Music Price in 2010.
"their clear, radiant performances, full of character, are vividly captured by the DSD recording... the music is sumptuously textured and elegantly phrased in these gorgeous realisations." (BBC Music Magazine)
A recent sampling of their performance schedule includes: a North American tour featuring their Canadian debut at Soundstreams/Northern Encounters Festival; their Japanese debut in Kyoto at the World Symposium on Choral Music; a project with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra and performances at the Fartein Valen Festival, the Greek festival Modelo in Patras; and a set of seven concerts in five days at the Hardanger Musikkfest in Norway followed by the Festival in Noirlac, France.
Based in Oslo, Norway, the members of Nordic Voices were educated at the State Academy of Music in Oslo and the National Academy of Operatic Art in Oslo, where they specialized in opera, composition, church music and pedagogy. In 2014, Nordic Voices was honored with the Artist of the Year award by the Norwegian Society of Composers.
Nordic Voices is:
Tone Elisabeth Braaten, soprano
Ingrid Hanken, soprano
Ebba Rydh, mezzo soprano
Per Kristian Amundrød, tenor
Frank Havrøy, baritone
Rolf Magne Schmidt Asser, bass
Fuge der Zeit (2015) link
Himmelkvad (2012) link
Lamentations (2009) link
Djånki Don (2008) link
Reges Terrae (2007) link
Sense and nonSense (2002) link
"Nordic Voices’ execution was magisterial." [More]
Classical Voice America
"The performances were all one could ask for, as the extended vocal techniques and rhythmic complexities were handled with consummate skill and ease... an exquisite performance"
"a sonic landscape ranging from luscious Renaissance polyphony to quacks,
whistles, groans, and overtone singing, all with great sophistication and
ensemble balance." "expert singing… impeccable intonation...an extraordinary
Listen to a full concert on Instant Encore
Monteverdi - O, Mirtillo
- Laudate Dominum
Thoresen - Diphonie
Thoresen - Himmelske Fader
Arvo Pärt: Magnificat
Ablinger - Tog, Viftereim
Luciano Berio - A-Ronne (segments)