Presented on this CD are a number of works for voice and piano by younger Swedish composers of the late 20th century. Does it reflect a newly aroused interest in the art of the lied, triggered perhaps by a post-modernist emancipation? Does it perhaps exemplify ways of using the intimate format without being weighed down by it or deliberately harking back to tradition? It is surely symptomatic that all three of the composers involved have devoted themselves to the writing of opera, while at the same time feeling a need to express themselves in a more intimate format. One thing is perfectly clear: renewal depends among other things on the existence of artists who are ready to test new forms, both in a purely musical sense and in terms of performance.
Olle Persson (b. 1958) is one such artist. Following studies at the Royal University College of Music in Stockholm and, later, under Rudolf Piernay in London, he has made a name for himself as a versatile singer commanding a multiplicity of genres. He has performed on big operatic stages in Sweden, such as the Royal Stockholm Opera, the Drottningholm Court Theatre and the Gothenburg Opera. Internationally he has appeared, for example, at the Royal Albert Hall in London and the Brooklyn Academy of Music in New York.
Matti Hirvonen (b 1958) is well known both as a soloist and as a chamber musician and, not least, as a discerning lieder interpreter in close empathy with our foremost singers. A pupil of Greta Erikson's, he studied lieder interpretation under Geoffrey Parsons in London. His solo recording credits include a CD of piano music by Schubert and, newly released under the Daphne Records label, Pulse, featuring new Swedish piano music.
Music by Jonas Forssell, Hans Gefors and Kjell Perder with poems by i. a. Lars Forssell, Pär Lagerkvist, Elmer Diktonius, Gunnar Björling and C H Morgenstern.