Eivind Groven

From Young Composers
Jump to: navigation, search
Eivind Groven

Eivind Groven (October 8, 1901 – February 8, 1977) was a Norwegian microtonal composer, music-theorist and fiddler. Like many Norwegian composers of his generation and the generation that preceded him, his music draws influence from Norwegian folk music. However, Groven is the only one of these composers that truly mastered both the Hardanger fiddle and the symphony orchestra.


Groven's music was influenced by his background in the folk music traditions of Norway. Groven did not believe in the concept of absolute music, he stated rather that "all music is about something". Thus, most of his works are based on literature, poems or novels, or even plays. He wrote a number of songs over poems written by Henrik Wergeland and choral works based on texts by the Norwegian novelist and playwright Hans E. Kinck and sister-in-law Ingeborg Refling Hagen. His piano concerto and two symphonies are also based on works by the latter two authors.

Groven's music is characterized by a utilization of the tonal, rhythmic, and formal features of Norwegian folk music. Most notably, he incorporates the metamorphic technique of the Norwegian peasant dances - his musical motives constantly grow out of one another, and are gradually transformed in such a way that the final result is something different from that with which the process began. Groven often combines this process with traditional structural devices such as sonata or rondo form.

He created large choral works, a piano concerto, two symphonies, symphonic poems, works for Hardanger fiddle and orchestra as well as shorter instrumental works. Groven often reused and expanded on material from earlier works while composing new works - his concerto for piano, for instance, was at first a large scale piano work, then an orchestral piece, before finally turning into the concerto which we know today.

Groven's most popular composition is the overture Hjalarljod, written and premiered at a competition celebrating the 900th anniversary of the city of Oslo in 1950.

Selected works

For the complete list see List of compositions by Eivind Groven

  • Symphony No. 1, "Towards the Mountains", 1938 (revised in 1951).
  • Symphony No. 2, "Midnight Hour", 1946
  • Ivar Aasen-suite for Choir and Orchestra, 1946
  • Overture for orchestra "Hjalarljod", 1950
  • Symphonic Norwegian Peasant Dances, 1956
  • Symphonic Norwegian Peasant Dances 2 Faldafeykir, 1965

External links

Wikipedia [1]