Arne Nordheim

Biography

Born: June 20, 1931; Larvik, Norway   Died: June 5, 2010; Oslo, Norway  
‘I have only one tiny little piece of music. That’s all my work,’ composer Arne Nordheim stated, ‘I rewrite it again and again. It’s an obsession in a way.’ From this ‘tiny little piece of music,’ Nordheim has created many forms and explored strange channels, combining instrumental, vocal and electronic resources in unusual, dramatic and fascinating ways.

The young Nordheim was studying organ at the Oslo Conservatory of Music when
Read more hearing a performance of Gustav Mahler’s second symphony seduced him to the idea of becoming a composer (although he was to leave the conservatory without the training in compositional craftsmanship that he was looking for). He began creating new music at a time when many were hostile to such experimentation (the Trinity Church in Oslo went as far as to ban works by Györgi Ligeti) and vociferous in their dislike of the music he composed. He became active within composers' organisations, notably chairing the Norwegian Society of Composers and the organization New Music. Recognised as an iconoclastic and controversial figure, he was invited to write about music for Dagbladet, the major newspaper in Norway, via which he ridiculed members of the Norwegian music community who refused to recognise the value of new music.

Rejecting Norway’s folklorist history, Nordheim was inextricably linked with the arrival of musical modernism in his home country. Working with a Steinway piano, a small synthesizer and ‘electric pencil sharpener,’ his work includes a piece incorporating poems in German by Rilke and Biblical text in Hebrew and scored for soprano, cello, mixed chorus and orchestra (Wirklicher Wald). He wrote for saxophonist, pianist, drummer, and for jazz vocalist Karin Krog and taped sounds that include German machine guns and a Norwegian toilet (Solar Plexus). Nordheim set Italian poems by Salvatore Quasimodo to music scored for orchestra and magnetic tape (Epitaffio), composed music for trombone and tape inspired by Lewis Carroll, and constructed a piece for violin with electronic delay written for an exhibition of paintings by Paul Klee. Solitaire featured Nordheim’s transformations of a human voice reading words by 19th century French poet Charles Baudelaire, while for the Lillehammer Winter Olympics in 1994 he envisaged a global concert broadcast to and from five continents via satellite. Such practices and methodologies attracted younger Norwegian musicians such as Helge Sten (aka Deathprod) and Geir Jenssen (aka Biosphere), who reworked material from Electric for the remix album Nordheim Transformed, in honour of his 70th birthday.

Given his subversive musical history, it must have been with great irony that Nordheim received his home - the Grotten or Grotto - from Norway’s government in recognition of his outstanding artistic achievements. Read less
Browse 1-25 of 29 Available Recordings
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  • 1.
    Octophonia: Lidholm, Lutoslawski, Sallinen & Nordheim / Styffe
    Label: Simax   Catalog: 1342 Release Date: 06/10/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ingvar Lidholm,  Witold Lutoslawski,  Aulis Sallinen,  Arne Nordheim
    Performer:  Dan Styffe,  Ingrid Andsnes,  Karol [Double Bass] Ciesluk,  Mathias Sunde [Double Bass] Valseth  ... 
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  • 2.
    Hypersuite 2: Music for Solo Cello / Adkins
    Label: Oberlin Music   Catalog: 13 Release Date: 05/13/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johann Sebastian Bach,  Elliott Carter,  Osvaldo Golijov,  Arne Nordheim  ... 
    Performer:  Darrett Adkins
    CD: $14.99
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  • 3.
    Under the Wing of the Rock / Chung, Kraggerud, Oslo Camerata
    Label: Two-l   Catalog: 119 Release Date: 02/26/2016   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Sally Beamish,  Henning Kraggerud,  Arne Nordheim,  Olav Anton Thommessen  ... 
    Performer:  Soon-Mi Chung,  Henning Kraggerud
    Conductor:  Oyvind Bjora
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Oslo Camerata
    SuperAudio CD: $24.99
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  • 4.
    But  / Ensemble Ernst
    Label: Lawo Classics   Catalog: 1085 Release Date: 10/02/2015   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim,  Salvatore Sciarrino,  Orjan Matre
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Ensemble Ernst
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  • 5.
    Knut Nystedt, Egil Hovland, Conrad Baden, Arne Nordheim
    Label: Pro Musica   Catalog: 9067 Release Date: 03/25/2014   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Egil Hovland,  Knut Nystedt,  Conrad Baden,  Arne Nordheim
    Performer:  Harald Herresthal,  Terje Viken,  Peter Kates
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  • 6.
    Haydn, Nordheim, Bartok: String Quartets / Engegardkvartetten
    Label: Two-l   Catalog: 91 Release Date: 04/30/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Franz Joseph Haydn,  Arne Nordheim,  Béla Bartók
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Engegard String Quartet
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  • 7.
    Nordheim: Complete Accordion Works / Frode Haltli
    Label: Simax   Catalog: 1328 Release Date: 01/29/2013   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim
    Performer:  Frode Haltli,  Raoul Björkenheim,  Hans-Kristian Kjos Sorensen
    Conductor:  Christian Eggen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Norwegian Radio Orchestra
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  • 8.
    Momentum - Nordic Cello Concertos
    Label: Norway Music   Catalog: 5075 Release Date: 09/25/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim,  Kaija Saariaho,  Per Norgĺrd
    Performer:  Jakob Kullberg
    Conductor:  Szymon Bywalec
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  • 9.
    Grieg: String Quartets; Nordheim: Rendezvous / Stephan Barratt Due, Oslo Camerata
    Label: Naxos   Catalog: 8572441 Release Date: 02/28/2012   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Edvard Grieg,  Arne Nordheim
    Conductor:  Stephan Barratt-Due
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Oslo Camerata
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  • 10.
    Nordheim: Epitaffio, Monolith, Canzona, Fonos, Adieu / Saraste, Gupta, Oslo Philharmonic
    Label: Simax   Catalog: 1318 Release Date: 10/25/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim
    Conductor:  Jukka-Pekka Saraste,  Rolf Gupta
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 11.
    Classical Accordion / Ksenija Sidorova
    Label: Champs Hill Records   Catalog: 19 Release Date: 07/26/2011   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim,  Domenico Scarlatti,  Yuji Takahashi,  Astor Piazzolla  ... 
    Performer:  Ksenija Sidorova
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  • 12.
    Beethoven, Nordheim, Bartok: String Quartets / Engegard Quartet
    Label: Two-l   Catalog: 71 Release Date: 07/27/2010   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim,  Béla Bartók,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Engegard String Quartet
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  • 13.
    2L - The Nordic Sound [Blu-ray Audio + SACD]
    Label: Two-l   Catalog: 1 Release Date: 05/26/2009   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Anonymous,  Magnar Am,  Arne Nordheim,  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart  ... 
    Performer:  Ellen Sejersted Bodtker,  Marianne Thorsen
    Conductor:  Terje Boye Hansen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Consortium Vocale Oslo,  Cikada Duo,  Dena Piano Duo  ... 
    Blu-ray Audio: $34.99
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  • 14.
    Nordheim: Colorazione, Link / Cikada Duo
    Label: Two-l   Catalog: 39 Release Date: 06/26/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim
    Performer:  Kenneth Karlsson,  Bjorn Rabben
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Cikada Duo
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  • 15.
    Nordheim: Listen; Listen - Inside Outside; Beethoven: Piano Sonata No. 32
    Label: Simax   Catalog: 1269 Release Date: 06/11/2007   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim,  Ludwig van Beethoven
    Performer:  Einar Steen-Nökleberg,  Mats Claesson
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  • 16.
    Nordheim: Draumkvedet
    Label: Simax   Catalog: 1169 Release Date: 09/18/2006   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim
    Conductor:  Ingar Bergby
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Norwegian Radio Orchestra
    CD: $29.99
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  • 17.
    Nordheim: Listen The Art Of Arne Nordheim
    Label: Norway Music   Catalog: 5070 Release Date: 05/02/2002   Number of Discs: 7
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim
    Performer:  Einar Steen-Nökleberg,  Siri Torjesen,  Eugeniusz Rudnik,  Arne Nordheim  ... 
    Conductor:  Per Dreier,  Ingar Bergby,  Herbert Blomstedt,  Karsten Andersen  ... 
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Royal Philharmonic Orchestra,  BIT 20 Ensemble Orchestra,  Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra  ... 
    CD: $98.99
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  • 18.
    The Nordic Cello - Sibelius, Rosenberg, Et Al / Bengtsson
    Label: Danacord   Catalog: 554 Release Date: 05/01/2002   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Hilding Rosenberg,  Niels Viggo Bentzon,  Atli Heimir Sveinsson,  Arne Nordheim  ... 
    Performer:  Erling Blöndal Bengtsson
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  • 19.
    Nordheim: Complete Violin Music / Herresthal, Aadland, Et Al
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 1212 Release Date: 10/23/2001   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim
    Performer:  Mats Claesson,  Peter Herresthal,  Oystein Sonstad
    Conductor:  Eivind Aadland
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Stavanger Symphony Orchestra
    CD: $21.49
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  • 20.
    Response - Percussion Works / Odd Borge Sagland
    Label: Bis   Catalog: 1118 Release Date: 07/25/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Joan Guinjoan,  Arne Nordheim,  Toshimitsu Tanaka,  Harald Saeverud  ... 
    Performer:  Odd Borge Sagland
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  • 21.
    A Norwegian Rendevous - Music Of Kvandal, Koch, Nordheim, Am
    Label: Intim Musik   Catalog: 65 Release Date: 04/25/2000   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Johan Kvandal,  Magnar Am,  Arne Nordheim,  Dagfinn Koch
    Performer:  Arve Moen Bergset,  Willy Postma
    Conductor:  Jan Tigmar
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Kristiansand Chamber Orchestra
    CD: $17.99
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  • 22.
    Salonen, Börtz, Nordheim, Schmidt: Oboe Concertos /Rosengren
    Label: Daphne   Catalog: 1002 Release Date: 06/01/1999   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Ole Schmidt,  Arne Nordheim,  Daniel Börtz,  Esa-Pekka Salonen
    Performer:  Bengt Rosengren
    Conductor:  Ole Kristian Ruud,  Esa-Pekka Salonen
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra
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  • 23.
    Requiem Of Reconciliation / Helmuth Rilling
    Label: Hänssler Classic   Catalog: 98100 Release Date: 03/24/1997   Number of Discs: 2
    Composer:  György Kurtág,  Joji Yuasa,  Alfred Schnittke,  Wolfgang Rihm  ... 
    Performer:  Thomas Randle,  Andreas Schmidt,  Julie Moffat,  Donna Brown  ... 
    Conductor:  Helmuth Rilling
    Orchestra/Ensemble:  Israel Philharmonic Orchestra,  Gächinger Kantorei Stuttgart,  Cracow Chamber Chorus
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  • 24.
    Nordheim: Magma; Tenebrae
    Label: Norway Music   Catalog: 4966 Release Date: 02/09/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim
    Performer:  Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra
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  • 25.
    Arne Nordheim: Wirklicher Wald; Aurora
    Label: Norway Music   Catalog: 4910 Release Date: 02/04/1992   Number of Discs: 1
    Composer:  Arne Nordheim
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