Southwestern Music Festival
February 8 - 11, 2018
Greetings on behalf of the Department of Music at Southwestern Adventist University. We are honored every year to host an exclusive Music Festival for High School and Academy musicians. The 2018 festival features four ensembles; symphony orchestra, saxophone ensemble, mass choir and honors choir. In addition to the festival ensembles, elite musicians may audition for a chance to win a music scholarship. Students that audition have the chance of being selected as a Scholarship Finalist and will have their transportation, food and lodging paid for and the opportunity to perform in a Showcase Recital on February 7, 2018 at Southwestern Adventist University.
We are privileged this year to perform the World Premier of Kim André Arnesen's newest choral composition!!! Written for the Southwestern Music Festival, Mr. Arnesen will be here to work with the singers and prepare them for the performance at the Meyerson Symphony Center.
Kim André Arnesen (b. 1980) is one of the most frequently performed classical composers from Norway today. He grew up in Trondheim and started at the music school at the age of 6 playing the piano. At the age of 10 he started singing in the Nidaros Cathedral Boys´ Choir.
He was educated at the Music Conservatory in Trondheim. As a composer he had his first performance in 1999 with the boys´ choir. Since then he has written music that has been performed by choirs all over the world.
In 2010, his first large scale work, Magnificat was commissioned and premiered by the Nidaros Cathedral Girls´ Choir. The premiere got an overwhelming feedback leading to several new commissions. A recording was released by 2L in 2014 and the album has received excellent reviews in Gramophone, Choir & Organ and other classical magazines.
In 2011 his choral work Even when He is silent had its premiere during the St. Olav Festival (Olavsfestdagene) in Trondheim. The piece was commissioned by the festival and has since its premiere been performed many times around the world and recorded on several CDs.
In 2013 Even when He is silent and Cradle Hymn were released on CD, DVD and Blu-ray on the "Christmas in Norway" with St. Olaf Choir and Nidaros Cathedral Girls' Choir. The show also aired on TV in the U. S. and Norway. Cradle Hymn has been the bestseller among Santa Barbara Music's Christmas music in 2014, 2015 and 2016. In 2016 it was performed at The White House for president Barack Obama.
In April 2014 his Requiem was premiered by the Nidaros Cathedral Boys' Choir, and the work had its U.S. premiere in April 2015 in West Viriginia. The work had its New York City premiere at Carnegie Hall in January 2017, in a production with the Distinguished Concerts International New York (DCINY).
Arnesen was the Composer-in-residence for the Denver based choral ensemble Kantorei and Artistic Director Joel Rinsema in their 2015/16 Season, which will end with Arnesen's second CD album to be released in 2017. In 2016 the new large scale work The Wound in the Water was premiered during the St. Olaf Festival in Trondheim, with Conspirare, conductor Craig Hella Johnson, soprano Elin Manahan Thomas and TrondheimSolistene.
The National Lutheran Choir has commissioned a new major work to be premiered in 2017. The work is written in commemoration of 500 years since the reformation, and will have the title Holy Spirit Mass. Several new commissioned anthem length pieces will also be premiered throughout 2017, including a commissioned work for the Texas Directors Association.
Arnesen is an elected member of the Norwegian Composers Society.
Chair, Department of Music
Southwestern Adventist University