Trondheim Chamber Music Festival 23.-29. September 2019

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Michel van der Aa

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This year’s festival composer, Michel van der Aa has certainly had an unusual path in becoming a composer. Before studying composition, he trained as a recording engineer at and completed a course in film directing, all of which is evident in his musical works. A pioneer in the realms of new music and technology, his staged works – incorporating film and sampled soundtrack – are seamless hybrids of musical theatre and multimedia where staging, film and music are interwoven into a collage.

Van der Aa’s latest music theatre work, Blank Out, received its world premiere in March 2016, presented in Dutch National Opera’s Opera Forward Festival. A 3D chamber opera for solo soprano onstage, baritone Roderick Williams on film, and Nederlands Kamerkoor and electronic soundtrack, the world premiere was performed by Miah Persson. In this year’s festival Persson is coming to Trondheim to perform the work in Olavshallen – an experience we feel fairly certain will be unforgettable to the audience.

Van der Aa’s repertoire also includes concert works and chamber music for small ensemble, soloists and soundtrack. In 2010 he collaborated with Sol Gabetta on the cross-media cello concerto Up-close, a hugely successful project that has been performed in many cities and received excellent reviews. Up-close will be performed by Fredrik Sjölin (Danish String Quartet) and The Trondheim Soloists during the festival.

«One of the most distinctive of the younger composers in Europe today. His ability to fuse music, text and visual images into a totally organic whole sets him apart from nearly all his contemporaries» – Andrew Clements, The Guardian

Read more about Michel van der Aa at Trondheim Chamber Music Festival here.