Máni, premiere April 9. 2022 at Voss Jazz Festival
Foto: Øystein Haara
Benedicte Maurseth / Sarah-Jane Summers //
The well-established fiddle players Benedicte Maurseth & Sarah-Jane Summers collaborate for the first time in the new work, Máni, for Hardanger fiddle and violin.
Both are well known for their deep roots in the Scottish and Norwegian folk music traditions, as well as for their creative and exploratory approach.
As folk musicians have always done, Maurseth and Summers are open to the current times, and draw impulses from other forms of art and music, in particular jazz, world, Baroque and contemporary music.
Sonorous exploration and the power of repetition form the core of this new work, Máni, which is the Norse word for moon. The Hardanger fiddle's rich palette comes strikingly to the fore, contrasting powerfully with the violin's direct form of speech. Rhythm and repetitive phrases evoke associations with traditional Norwegian gangar and springar, as well as Scottish slow airs, American minimalism, and free improvised music. Máni is also a collaboration with light artist Randiane Sandboe.
Máni is dedicated to the moon's repeated gravitational force, its eternal circle, like a meditation, a ritual, in the form of pulse, rhythm and phrases.
Benedicte Maurseth, Hardanger fiddle player, composer and author, is an established and acclaimed performer.
She has been a student of the master fiddler Knut Hamre for several decades, and has toured extensively worldwide.
She has collaborated with many leading artists across several different genres, such as Nils Økland, Marilyn Crispell,
Rolf Lislevand, Jon Fosse and Anne Marit Jacobsen.
Maurseth has written music for theater and film. Her work Tidekverv, which was premiered in 2017, was awarded NOPA's prestigious music prize, and her song "Very Full", which was specially written for the TV series Loki (Marvel Studio in Hollywood), was recently high on the Billboard list.
Maurseth has recorded several albums for Grappa Musikkforlag (Hubro & Heilo) and ECM Records, and has also published books, articles and essays.
A versatile, free-thinking and impassioned performer,
Sarah-Jane’s highly expressive style blends the lyricism of traditional music with the rawness of improvisation.
She has performed with many top folk, jazz, pop and contemporary music artists, including Susanna Wallumrød, Highasakite, Quatuor Bozzini and Julie Fowlis, and has released three completely solo albums.
Her three albums with Juhani Silvola all received Top of the World status from leading world music magazine Songlines.
As a composer, she has written several commissions as well as music for a BBC production.
Sarah-Jane was taught by the late, great Donald Riddell, who learnt from a relative of hers, Alexander Grant of Battangorm.
She holds a master’s degree in Norwegian traditional music & improvisation from the Norwegian Academy of Music.
Premiere April 9, 2022 at Vossajazz.
"Then it was time for a new commissioned work and, after a short walk through new streets in Voss, we found a wonderful concert venue, the church, Nain. Great for acoustic music (just the sound of the door being opened and closed was lovely), and also full to the very last seat. The stage was located in the middle of the large, white room with high ceilings, with the audience placed in a circle around, with light design by Randiane Sandboe that created a sparkling atmosphere. It was Benedicte Maurseth on Hardanger fiddle and Sarah-Jane Summers on fiddle, in a work that condensed intensity and beauty, in a captivating meeting between Norwegian and Scottish folk music traditions. "Máni" takes its name from the Norse name for 'moon', and in combination with the scenography and the circular contemporary music orientation of the material, inspired by the moon's gravitational force and mysterious aura, this became a hypnotic experience - one of the big highlights at this year's festival."
– Audun Vinger, Jazz i Norge
Randiane Aalberg Sandboe, er freelance lysdesigner for scenekunst med base i Bergen.
Sandboe har en bachelor i romdesign fra Universitetet i Bergen (2019), og designer for dans, musikk og teater. Hun har samarbeidet med en rekke scenekunstnere, og på kort tid opparbeidet seg erfaring fra Den Nationale Scene, Det Vestnorske teateret, Bright og flere festivaler som Vill Vill Vest, Oktoberdans, og Bergen Dramatikkfesitival. I 2020 fikk hun lysdesigner Silje Grimstad som mentor, og mottok etableringsstipend fra Bergen Kommune. For tiden er Sandboe engasjert som lysdesigner i ulike produksjoner, blant annet av Lene Therese Teigen (NO), Ludvig Ulhbors (SV) og Andrea Spreafico (IT).