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Doloroso is a nine minute piece for 16-part mixed chorus, based upon texts by Edgar Allan Poe, Charles Baudelaire and William Burroughs. The piece was commissioned by Erik Westberg for his Vocal Ensemble, who premiered it expertly in october 2007.

The basic idea was to take these three different writers, who shared similar themes but lived in different times and cultures, and connect them as if they were all dreaming the same dream, but in different times.

Expanding upon my simple technique of de- and reconstructing text, which I first used in the piece "Berenice" from 2003, I cut up texts by the three writers and categorized words into different timbre classes depending on their phonetic/vowel qualities, so that I could create somewhat homogenous textures of evenly flowing colours.

The cut-up idea is also reflected musically and structurally in the second part of the work, where collages of repeted fragments are created; in part as an homage to William Burroughs, who pioneered the cut-up technique, but also reminiscent of Warhol's method of repetition as well as echoing aspects of early american minimalist music.

UPDATE: A recording of the piece is now available as part of an excellent 3-CD box of choir music performed by Erik Westbergs Vokalensemble. It can be ordered through iTunes or this email address. An excerpt of the recording is presented below.

To order/hire score, please contact the Swedish Music Information Centre.


"Doloroso", excerpt. (Performed by Erik Westbergs Vokalensemble) [ DOWNLOAD MP3 ]