8. Marts 22.00 på DK 4


Inger Dam-Jensen og Morten Ernst Lassen akkompagneret af Ulrich Stærk gæster "Musikalsk Talkshow" lørdag d. 8. marts kl. 22:00.


Carl Nielsen  -  Songs

Inger Dam-Jensen and Morten Ernst Lassen records their first cd

The treasury of Danish song is closely associated with the name of the composer Carl Nielsen. His folk-like melodies are brilliantly simple and danced their way into a popular tradition which at the time was being stifled by romantic Lieder no one could sing along with. This tradition of the songs called ‘romances’ in Denmark was in fact Carl Nielsen’s starting point when he wrote his first songs; but he made it highly personal, and he soon delved to its roots with his love of simplicity. These two parallel strands – the catchy popular song and the experimental art song – remained a unique feature throughout his songwriting career.

It is these two strands hat we can experience on Dacapo’s new release with Carl Nielsen’s songs: well known and well loved songs side by side with the more artful type where the texts posed different musical challenges. There are examples of songs from the first two collections – opus 4 and 6 – to poems by J.P. Jacobsen; mysterious songs where the young composer’s mercurial temperament shins through, rich in images and symbols. But as early as Song behind the Plough from the collection Songs by Ludvig Holstein from 1894, Carl Nielsen points in a new direction with a melody that is simple and easy to sing along with right from the start. Carl Nielsen later developed this talent for popular song in his collaboration with Thomas Laub on the collection En Snes Danske Viser (20 Danish Songs) in the years 1915-1917, but that it did not come easy is evident from the story of Underlige Aftenlufte (Oh, strange evening breezes) – the first draft was quite unsingable and was rejected on the spot by Laub. The well known melody is included in this collection, which also features the rare Italian Pastoral Aria written for the play Cupid and the Poet to celebrate Hans Christian Andersen’s 125th anniversary in 1925. And the CD ends with a scene from the opera Masquerade, Henrik og Pernille’s duet Min søde balsambøsse. This sums it all up – charming and bold.



Recently Inger Dam-Jensen was named one of the 10 most important sopranos of our generation worldwide by the British newspaper The Sunday Times. Since she won the Cardiff Singer of The World competition in 1993 she has been in great demand on the most important international opera and concert stages.

Morten Ernst Lassen has long since had his breakthrough on German concert and opera stages. For several years Morten Ernst Lassen has been a soloist at the Deutsche Oper in Berlin, but now he has left the ensemble to tour freelance. His calendar for the near future includes collaborations with the greatest conductor and pianist names of our time.

The pianist Ulrich Stærk is known both as a concert pianist and as a fine accompanist. He has won the Artist’s Prize of the Danish Music Critics, but in the other Nordic countries and Germany too he appears regularly as a soloist in front of recognized orchestras and conductors, as well as appearing on many CD, radio and TV productions.

The singers Inger Dam-Jensen and Morten Ernst Lassen are a couple in private life, but are not keen on appearing as an ‘opera couple’ in the usual sense. On their first CD together, though, the singing couple do take on a true-blue opera duet as the last track: Henrik and Pernille’s duet Min søde balsambøsse ('My sweet little pot of syrup') from Carl Nielsen’s opera Masquerade. There is no doubt that the three outstanding Danish artists are on home ground here.





Music to five poems by J.P. Jacobsen, op. 4(1891)

1. Sunset

2. In the Seraglio Garden

3. To Asali

4. Irmelin Rose

5. When day has gathered

Songs and Verses, op. 6 (1891)

6. Period piece

7. The Seraphs

8. Silken shoes on a golden last!

9. An age of regret

10. Song from ‘Mogens’

Songs, op. 10 (1894)

11. Apple blossom

12. The Lake of Memory

13. Summer song

14. Song behind the plough

15. This eve

16. Greeting

From A Score of Danish Songs II (1917)

17. Oft am I glad

From Strophic Songs, op. 21, Vol. II (1901-07)

18. Bow down your head, now, flower

Nature Study (1916)

19. The sun shines in my neighbour’s yard

From Twenty Different Melodies (1921)

20. Bright are the leaves in the woods now

From A Score of Danish Songs I (1915)

21. Oh, strange evening breezes

22. Italian pastoral aria op. 54 (1930)

Duet from Masquerade (1904-06)

23. My sweet little pot of syrup












Click cover for info