Jablonski, Marek (Michael)

Johanson, Sven-Eric (Emanuel)

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Johanson, Sven-Eric (Emanuel)

(b Västervik, 10 Dec 1919; d Göteborg, 29 Sept 1997). Swedish composer. After attending the Ingesund College of Music (1938) he studied composition with Melchers at the Royal College of Music, Stockholm (1939–46), and privately with Rosenberg. He was an organist in Uppsala (1944–50) and from 1952 worked as a church musician and teacher in Göteborg. A superb improviser on the organ and on the piano, he was a founder member of the Monday Group in the 1940s. He became a member of the Royal Swedish Academy of Music in 1971. Having made intensive studies of Gregorian chant and Palestrinian polyphony, he found the basis for his own work in Hindemith's counterpoint. This he gradually developed in an individual manner, applying the 12-note technique first loosely in the Sinfonia ostinata and the Saxophone Sonata, then rigorously in such pieces as the Sinfonietta concertante and the Tio epigram for piano. Melodic elasticity, as well as a very personal harmonic and rhythmic serialism, mark his later work, and Johanson was ready to explore the newest developments, as in the electronic modification of instrumental sound of the Hommaggio a Boccaccio (1972). Among his most important works is his Symphony no.3 ‘Etemenanki’ (‘The Elements’, 1965–8), a symphony whose movements bear the names of the ancient elements: water, fire, air, earth; his late symphonies are also noteworthy. Through his teaching Johanson enabled amateur musicians and choirs to master advanced techniques.


(selective list)

Stage: Bortbytingarna [The Changelings] (fairy tale op, Johanson), 1953–5; Kunskapens vin [The Wine of Knowledge] (op, G. Möllerstedt), 1959; Tjuvens pekfinger [The Thief's Pointing Finger] (comic op, C.J. Holzhausen), 1966–8, rev. 1982; Rivalerna [The Rivals] (microdramma, Möllerstedt), 3 solo vv, ens, 1967; Sagan om ringen (A. Harning, after J.R.R. Tolkien), 1973–4; Stoppnålen [The Darning Needle] (Harning, after H.C. Andersen), S, wind qnt, perc, 1973; Reliken (op, B. Frodi, after Salernitano), 1974; Skandal, ers majestät (op), solo vv, wind qnt, str qnt, perc, 1978; Pojken med flöjten (fairy tale op, H. Peterson), 2 S, T, B, SATB, speaking chorus, fl, bn, gui, 1980; Du människa (T. Waltman), male chorus, cl, gui, perc, synth, vc, 1980; Jättevänner (children's op, R. Lagercrantz), 1982; Slottet, sym. ballet, 1983; Dinize (op, 2, Wällhed), 11 vv, chorus, dancers, orch, 1994–5

12 syms., incl. no.1 ‘Sinfonia ostinata’, 1949, rev. 1954; no.3 ‘Etemenanki’ [The Elements], 1965–8; no.6 ‘Sinfonietta pastorella’, 1972; no.7 ‘Sinfonia d'estate’, 1987; no.8 ‘En Fröding-symfoni’, 1983–4; no.10 ‘Symphonie chez nous’, 1990; no.11 ‘Sinfonia d'autunno’, 1991; no.12 ‘Sinfonia da camera: A Schönberg in memoriam’, 1992

Other orch: Sinfonietta concertante, vn/balalaika, chbr orch, 1951, rev. 1981; Vagues, 1965; Fotia, 1966; Conc. Gothenburghese, pf, orch, 1970; Conc., keyed fiddle, str, 1971; Astrofonia, str, 1974; Spelmanssymfoni, str, 1974; Variationer och fuga, 1974; Variationer och fuga över ett eget tema i östgötsk anda, 1974; Nalle Puh, sym. fairy tale, recit, orch, 1979; Hornpipa, wind, 1985; Festuvertyr Gränna-Brahe, 1993; Accdn Conc., 1996; suites, serenades, concertante works

Choral: Aff S Christoffero, chbr orat, 1948; Sym. no.2 ‘Duino Elegy no.7’ (R.M. Rilke), T, chorus, 1954; Sym. no.4 ‘Sånger i förvandlingens natt’ (O. Sjöstrand), chorus, 1958; Ave krax – ave crux (radio play, G. Andersson), S, Bar, chorus, speaking chorus, org, tape, 1967; Upplands Bro bygge, chorus, orch, 1974; [9] Fancies (W. Shakespeare), SATB, pf, 1974; Kom kärlekens ande, SATB, 1975; Musik till Gustav Vasa (A. Strindberg), chorus, ens, 1975; Variationer över en speldosemelodi, vocalise, SATB, 1976; Pelle Plutt (trad.), 15 doggerels, children's choir, 1989; Det blir så vackert där du går (P. Lagerkvist), 1991; 20 cants., c100 a cappella pieces

Solo vocal: The Haze Trees (Möllerstedt, as G. Alm), S, cl, vn, va, pf, tape, 1961; Herden och danserskan [The Shepherd and the Dance] (Andersson), S, org, perc, 1967; Tiden i förvandling [Changing Times] (Möllerstedt), Bar, wind, perc, tape, 1968; Kassandras omvändelse: monodramma per music (W. Natusch), S, fl, perc, hp, 1977; Ur höga visan [From the Song of Songs], recit, S, fl, pf, 1981; Fågeln sjunger (E.H. Malmström), 10 songs, 1v, insts, 1996; c100 songs

Inst: 5 str qts incl. no.4 ‘Séquences variables’, 1961; Jig for Jones, str qt, 1949; Sonata, sax, pf, 1949; Tio epigram, pf, 1952; Sonomobil, 2 tpt, hn, trbn, 1967; Hommaggio a Boccaccio, elec rec, elec crumhorn, elec balalaika, elec keyed fiddle, 1972; Tolv tecken, vn, bn, 1974; Trio, cl, vn, vc, 1974; Tema med variationer ‘O giv oss Herre av den tro’, vn, va, vc, db, 1977; Triterium, fl, vc, db, 1977; Conc. Grosso, wind qnt, brass sextet, 5 perc, 1978; Beat, Beat, Beaten, perc, 1979; Solo Sonata, perc, 1981; Pf Sonata no.4 ‘Sonata flexa’, 1982–3; Mitt hjärtas melodi [Melody of my Heart], pf/org, 1987, rev. 1989; Conc., org, brass qnt, 1987; Trio, ob, va, vc, 1988; 8 variationer över en korsfararsång frå 1100-talet, decet, 1988; Org Sonata, 1991; A la recherche, fl, 1992

Music for the theatre and cinema


Principal publishers: Gehrman, Sveriges Körförbunds Förlag

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