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Short History of Scandinavian Music by John Horton

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  • .andinavian Music

    A Short HistoryJOHN HOUTON

    ^ . ! i Jxe cmturies Scandinavia has1

    vi notable contributions to die

    ut * ,3] world in the fields of composi-tion, performance, and cnucism. In thisbook, which is probably the first of itskind to appear in English, Mr. Hortonsummarises the musical histoiy o

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    Denmark, Norway, Sweden, w 'land from the earliest *>

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  • KANSAS CITY, MO PUBLIC LIBRARY

  • 54- IOC12"o.?tor.

    70.94o K82s 64-IC012Horton 07*50

    Scandinavian nu'sic; a short

    history

    kansas city |||| public library

    .

    Books will be issued only

    on presentation of library card.

    Please report lost cards and

    ; change of residence promptly.

    Card holders are responsible for

    all books, records, films, pictures

    or other library materials ,

    checked out on their cards.

  • Scandinavian Music : A Short History

  • by the same author

    *

    GRIEG

    (Duckworth]

    SOME NINETEENTH

    CENTURY COMPOSERS(Oxford University Press)

  • Scandinavian Music:

    A Short History

    JOHN HORTON

    W. W. NORTON & COMPANY ING.

    NEW YORK

  • First American Edition 1963

    Printed in Great Britain

    ! 9^3 ty John Norton

  • Preface

    In order to keep the later chapters of this book within reason-able bounds I have thought it expedient to end the surveyhalfway through the present century. For this reason few

    references, or none at all, have been made to certain youngerScandinavian composers whose names have been much to thefore during the nineteen-sixties, and important recent works bysome well-established composers have also had to be passedover without mention. A few exceptions to this general principlewill be found, and where possible the reader's attention has

    been drawn, in text or footnotes, to biographical and criticalstudies published after as well as before 1950.

    My warmest thanks are due to the many friends and corre-spondents who have replied to inquiries, made helpful sugges-tions, and in many cases lent or given documentary material. Ishould like to name in particular :

    Dr. Nils Afzelius, Dr. Walter Bergmann, Mr. Dan Fog, Mr.R. D. Gibson and the staff of Messrs. J. and W. Chester Ltd.,Mr. Robert Layton, Mr. Richard Newnham, Mr. Donald

    Mitchell, Mr. M. Kay-Larsen of the Danish Institute in Edin-

    burgh and the staff of the Royal Danish Embassy in London,Mr. H. E. Saether of the Royal Norwegian Embassy, Dr. P. A.

    Hildeman and his colleagues in the Swedish Institute for

    Cultural Relations, Mrs. Tahtinen of the Finnish Legation, Mr.

    Patrick Saul and the staff of the British Institute of Recorded

    Sound, Mr. F. Backer-Gr0ndahl, Dr. P. Kromer, Dr. Kristian

    Lange and Dr. H. Huldt Nystr0m with other members of the

    staff of the Norwegian Broadcasting Corporation, Mrs. H.^ \8Wfr ^aST*** 1*6B41O012

  • PREFACE

    Oslo Folk Museum, and Dr. 0. Gaukstad ofthe Oslo UniversityLibrary.

    I am also indebted to the following public bodies for in-formation and documents readily supplied :

    In Copenhagen, the Royal Library, the ArnamagnaeanCollection, the National Museum, the Rosenberg Palace, andthe Officers' Academy in Frederiksberg Castle ; in Hiller0d, theNational Historical Museum; in Stockholm, the RoyalLibrary, the National Museum, and the Municipal Museum;in London, the British Museum and Cecil Sharp House.To members of the staff of the Norwegian Office for Cultural

    Relations and to our friends in Norway my wife and I wish toexpress our appreciation of the hospitality they have so

    generously bestowed upon us : among the many to whom weare deeply grateful are Mr. and Mrs. Egil Nordsj0, Mr. andMrs. Gunnar Saevig, Mr. and Mrs. Harald Saeverud, Mr. andMrs. Geirr Tveitt, Mr. Ivar Benum, and Mr. Alf Hurum. Weremember with gratitude our meetings and conversations withDr. O. M. Sandvik, Mr. D. Monrad Johansen, and Professor O.Gurvin.

    I owe a particular debt to Dr. Gerald Abraham for hisconstant encouragement, kindly and constructive criticism, andwise and experienced counsel.

    Finally, I would thank Mr. Giles de la Mare and theeditorial and production staffs of Messrs. Faber and Faber fortheir interest in this book at every stage of its publication.

    JOHN HORTONJanuary 1963

  • Contents

    1. PRE-CHRISTIAN AND MEDIAEVAL PERIODS page 152. THE REFORMATION : Music IN CHURCH,

    SCHOOL AND COURT 333. SWEDISH Music DURING THE AGE OF GREAT-

    NESS 51

    4. Two SCANDINAVIAN MASTERS OF THEBAROQUE: DIDRIK BUXTEHUDE AND JOHANHELMICH ROMAN 62

    5. THE FOUNDATIONS OF SCANDINAVIAN OPERA 736. NATIONAL ROMANTICISM AND THE STUDY OF

    FOLK Music 877. LYRIC SONG AND PIANOFORTE MINIATURE 988. ORCHESTRAL AND CHAMBER Music IN THE

    NINETEENTH CENTURY in

    9. BALLET, OPERA AND OTHER Music FOR THESTAGE 124

    10. JEAN SIBELIUS AND CARL NIELSEN 12911. NORWEGIAN Music AFTER GRIEG 13612. DANISH Music AFTER CARL NIELSEN 14313. FINNISH Music AFTER SIBELIUS 148

    14. WILHELM STENHAMMAR AND MODERN SWEDISHMusic 154

    POSTSCRIPT 165APPX. I. SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER READING 169APPX. II. JOHANN MATTHESON'S PAMPHLETON 'SUBTERRANEAN Music IN NORWAY' 170

    INDEX 1759

  • Illustrations

    la Bronze Age lur; National Museum, Copen-

    hagen facing page 16

    b Carved doorpost from church at Hylestad,

    Norway (c.i20o), depicting the story of

    Gunnar 16

    II Nobilis, humilis : two-part hymn to St. Magnus ;from the fifteenth-century Codex upsaliensis

    (C 233) 17

    Ilia Concordemus in hac die: opening of sequenceattributed to Archbishop Birger Gregerson,fourteenth century; from Codex upsaliensis

    (C 5 i3) 32

    b Gratulemur dulci prosa : opening of sequence for

    Festival of St. Erik, possibly by Jakob Israel-

    son, Archbishop of Uppsala (d. 1281); from

    Codex upsaliensis ( 0513) 32

    IV Page from facsimile of Codex runicus (0.1296-1319) showing notation of part of Danish

    ballad; original in Arnamagnaean Collection

    (AM 8vo 80). 33

    V Lux illuxit letabunda : opening of sequence forFestival of St. Olav; from Riksarkivet (NationalArchives of Norway) (Rg86b) 36

    Via & b Brass music from the Court of Christian IIIof Denmark; Royal Library, Copenhagen (41:0

    1872 and 1873) 37ii

  • ILLUSTRATIONS

    VII Compenius Organ in the chapel of Frederiks-

    borg Castle, Hiller0d facing page 44

    VIII Groups of musicians from ceiling painting byFranz Cleyn (0.1620) in Rosenberg Palace,

    Copenhagen 45

    IX Group of musicians from ceiling painting byLe Coffre (1671-1722) in FrederiksbergCastle, Copenhagen 52

    X Part of original score ofDrottningholm Music, byJ. H. Roman 53

    XI Pages from original score of Gustav Vasa, byJ. G. Naumann 60

    XII C. M. Bellman, from the portrait painted forGustaf Ill's collection in 1779 by Pehr Krafft

    the elder 61

    XIII 'Extraordinary mode ofsinging by Finlanders' ;from Acerbi's Travels through Sweden, Finland,and Lapland . . . in theyears 1798 and 1799 96

    XIV Heart-shaped manuscript book containingDanish ballad-verses (0.1553-55); Royal

    Library, Copenhagen 97

    XV Das Unterirrdische Klippen-Concert in Norwegen:title-page of pamphlet by Mattheson, 1740 112

    XVI Title-page of song-book by Samuel SimonWeise, published in Copenhagen, 1753; Royal

    Library, Copenhagen 113

    XVII Opera-production in the Gustavian era ; scenefrom Piccini's Atys9 from a painting by PehrHillestrom of about 1 785 1 1 6

    XVIII Musical evening in the house of Christian

    Waagepetersen, showing Niels Gade at the

    piano ; from the painting by W. N. Marstrand,1 834, Frederiksborg Castle 1 1 7

    12

  • ILLUSTRATIONS

    XIX Evald Tang Kristensen (1843-1929), Danishfolksong collector ; from the painting by Hans

    Agersnap in the National Historical Museum,Frederiksborg Castle facing page 124

    XX Group of modern Hardanger fiddle-players 1 25XXI Group of Scandinavian composers at the

    Festival of Nordic Music, Copenhagen, 1919 132

    XXII Hilding Rosenberg 133XXIII Harald Saeverud 140

    XXIV The Royal Danish State Radio SymphonyOrchestra in the Concert Hall, Radio House,

    Copenhagen I4 1

  • Pre-Christian and Mediaeval Periods

    Theearliest traces of music among the Scandinavian

    peoples show that, as in other primitive communities,the sounds of human voices and instruments were

    regarded not merely as serving the everyday purposes of com-

    munication and signalling in peace and war, but also as

    possessing supernatural powers associated with the observance

    of rites and ceremonies and with the preservation and trans-

    mission of tribal lore. Our knowledge of these matters is derivedfrom three sources : literary references, pictorial representationsof instruments chiefly in wood and stone and the remains ofactual instruments brought to light by fortunate chance or in

    the