|ter; Tapiola; En Saga; Finlandia; Swan of Tuonela; Karelia; Oceanides.|
|CHAMBER MUSIC : Voces Intimae (string quartet).|
|PANTOMIME : Scaramouche.|
|Piano pieces; songs.|
Important recordings of music by Jean Sibelius:
Gray Cecil. Sibelius; Niemann Walter. Sibelius.
|VICTOR : Finlandia ( Stokowski); En Saga ( Goossens); Valse Triste; Swan of Tuonela; Symphony no. 4 ( Stokowski).|
|COLUMBIA : First Symphony (Kajanus); Second Symphony (Kajanus).|
" Christian Sinding, now that Edward Grieg is dead, is unquestionably the chief representative of Norwegian music."--
CHRISTIAN SINDING was born in Kongberg, Norway, on January 11, 1856. His musical training was acquired almost entirely in Germany, in Leipzig, Munich and Berlin, after which he returned to Christiana to devote himself to music. He began his career as a concert-pianist, by which he acquired considerable prestige. In 1880, he received a modest stipend from the State to enable him to pursue composition seriously, unhampered by the necessity of having to earn a living.
His immersion in serious creative work soon yielded fruit, for in 1884 he produced the first work to bring him reputation--a quintet which, tho it aroused serious criticism among musicians because of its daring use of "parallel fifths" and "parallel sevenths," enjoyed a great popularity in the concert-hall because of the freshness of the melodic material.
After the quintet, Sinding rose to fame as a composer for the pianoforte, producing a number of works (including his famous Variations in E-flat Minor) which are of importance, noteworthy, as Eugen Segnitz points out, for "the way in which the thematic material as a nursery of new musical organisms is turned to best advantage, the luxuriantly-flowing, ever-expressive and refined melody, and finally the spon-
taneous but always highly interesting themes."
Sinding's music, whether for orchestra, chamber-groups or the piano, is "independent of any school," writes Jens Arbo. "His style has often a Scandinavian strain, without its being always possible to characterize it as specifically Norwegian; but its sharp-cut rhythms, bold harmonies and vigorous tendency are characteristic of his Norwegian temperament. . . . Sinding's music is more epic than dramatic. He favors a heroic al fresco style which is manly and passionate in its form of expression. Side by side with the typical Sinding characteristics (restless modulation, violent harmonic movements, rhythmic monotony) we see the influence of Wagner, especially as regards melody and harmonization."
In view of the fact that Christian Sinding is generally accepted as the successor to Edvard Grieg, it is interesting to compare the work of these two composers. M. M. Ulfrstad makes the interesting comparison: "Grieg's style was a combination of national melody with Schumann technique. Sinding's style became a combination of national melody and Wagnerian technique. His music is optimistic, virile and of epic strength and breadth. Whilst Grieg's music was an echo from the mountains, thin, mournful moods and poetic idylls,____________________