Published for Nordic Music Days festival 2017 in London where two vocal works of Madeleine Isaksson was performed:
Ciels, by the vocal ensemble Exaudi, and Várije, by London children's choir together with Swedish joik singers Cecilia Persson and Jörgen Stenberg.
Extract (read the whole article in pdf below)
... " Madeleine Isaksson (b. 1956) was born and educated in Sweden, but has long been based in the vicinity of Paris. In her recent orchestral work Ljusrymd (‘Space of light’), premiered earlier this year, the concept of three-dimensional spatiality interacts with sonic embodiments of darkness and light, corresponding to low and high pitches/registers. Her work Ciels for six voices also explicitly alludes to a high-low axis, particularly with respect to the sky, based as it is on French poet Gérard Haller’s Météoriques. The texts performed by the vocalists in this work relate to concepts of time and atmospheric states of the sky (‘temps’ being a homonym in French, denoting both ‘time’ and ‘weather’). The work is performed at the concert In the steppes of Sápmi. Isaksson’s Várije (‘Towards the Mountains’) is based on three joik songs, the evocative singing tradition of the Sami people in northern Scandinavia. Joik has traditionally been conceived as evoking, summoning, or even in a mystical sense being the place, thing or person of which one sings.
In the case of this vocal work, the three melodies evoke the draught reindeer, a perilous mountain top, Riehker bakti and the Umeå river. The work is performed by girls choirs from London together with Swedish joik singers Jörgen Stenberg and Cecilia Persson. ‘For me, space, landscape and room are fundamental concepts for my compositional procedure’ says Isaksson. ‘Geographical images, natural phenomena, and landscapes can be present in an initial phase as metaphorical tools for the structural outline, but they disappear entirely during the process of composition, only – sometimes, not always – to surface again in the nishing stages, with a title that in some way bears witness to the original ideas.’ ...
© Mattias Lundberg, 2017 professor, Department of Musicology, University of Uppsala.