Torstensson, Klas

Klas Torstensson was born on January 16, 1951, in Nässjö, Sweden. Education Klas Torstensson studied composition at the Ingesunds Musikhögskola (Sweden), musicology at the University of Gothenburg (Sweden), and electronic music at ...

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L'autunno di Christina : Dramatic scene for soprano and large ensemble / Klas Torstensson

Publisher's number: 16243
Genre: Vocal music
Subgenre: Voice and large ensemble
Instruments: sopr-solo fl/picc ob/eh cl-cl-b fg tpt h trb-t/trb-b pf 2perc 2vn vla vc db
Duration: 32'00"
Number of players: 16
Year of composition: 2018
Status: fully digitized (real-time delivery)

L’autunno di Christina - Christina’s Autumn – is the third part of the Christina Cycle (2004-2018), which includes the following compositions: 1. Le dolci parole (2004) for soprano solo (3’), 2. Pocket Size Violin Concerto, 2nd movement (2010) for violin, flute, cello and piano (5’), 3. L’autunno di Christina (2018) for soprano and large ensemble (32’) and 4. Four Queen Christina Madrigals (2013) for chamber choir (24’).
Le dolci parole is also the third song in the song cycle ‘In grosser Sehnsucht’ (2004). The Pocket Size Violin Concerto also exists in a larger version for violin and large ensemble (2010), whereas the Queen Christina Madrigals is an adaptation of a work for large mixed choir, ‘Arcadia 1689’ (2013).
The Christina Cycle deals with the life and work of the Swedish Queen Christina (1632-1689). After only 10 years on the throne, she abdicated and converted to catholicism. The last decades of her life she lived in Rome, where she took on the role of meccenas of the fine Arts. In L’autunno di Christina for soprano and large instrumental ensemble we meet the old queen, looking back on a rebellious life full of struggle and unfulfilled longings and desires.
After an introvert and mild prologue played by the (muted) strings, the two percussionists introduce a soldierly tone. The Queen hastily enters the stage while indignantly reading aloud from the report made of the (umpteenth) opening of her grave in the papal crypt of the Vatican, Rome, in 1965 (sic). Christina enumerates the injustices made to her, but at the same time exposes the power and talents attributed to her (not in the last place by herself). The (unanswered) love for cardinal Azzolino is remembered in the final movement. In a
short epilogue the ensemble recites a quote from her testament: ‘The tombstone should only have the following inscription: Here lies Christina, she lived for 63 years.’
The texts is a montage (by the composer) of original, historical sources: either texts by Queen Christina herself, or by contemporaries.

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