HENNING SOMMERRO: Legende Ohne Worte for String Quartet
Based on Farten Valen’s Legende op.1, and Valse Noble op.22, no.2
(N.M.O. 14379B / Set of parts)
Legende ohne Worte is my recollection of Fartein Valen’s two piano pieces Legende op. 1 and Valse Noble op. 22, no. 2. When I was 18-19 I was fascinated by Fartein Valen (1887-1952), and read his biography and played the Legende and Valse Noble. When the Fartein Valen festival invited me to write a piece for their 2016 festival, I had the idea of letting these two piano pieces provide the source material for my contribution. Sitting at the piano I could remember parts of Legende, but the Valse Noble was gone. All I could coax from my memory was the opening theme. In this momentary flashback I put down all that I remembered, and that became the basis for my piece.
Today when I checked the music to Valen’s pieces I found that there were many similarities. Valen is the source; my faulty memory has adapted the original and produced a partly different piece of music. This is a common method of transmission in folk music, but not so usual in classical music. My adaptation/composition might therefore be offending to some, but I am happy to let it stand the test.
Trondheim, 22 October 2015 Henning Sommerro