A Swedish Christmas OratorioSofia Vokalensemble
Bengt Ollén, Helena Ek
The soprano Helena Ek, Sofia Vokalensemble, a treble choir from Stockholms Musikgymnasium, Capella Nordica and Fredrik Sixten perform the first Swedish Christmas oratorio ever. Conductor is Bengt Ollén. Fredrik Sixten’s music to the Christmas story is inspired by Swedish folk tunes.
The Evangelist part, sung by the soprano soloist, has a clearly folk music touch; some old Swedish folk hymns are also interwoven. The hymns, sung by the two choirs, are written by the famous Swedish poet Ylva Eggehorn. Fredrik Sixten says about these lyrics: “Our intent was to show that there is darkness, poverty, alienation and death in store for the innocent child, the Son of God, lying there in a manger, who will later be crucified. Yet the oratorio is also full of joy and praise.” A Swedish Christmas oratorio premiered in December, 2009 at the Gothenburg Cathedral.
Fredrik Sixten is a Swedish composer, cathedral organist and conductor. Born in 1962, he earned his BA at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm and studied composition with Sven-David Sandström. Today, he is a prominent composer of church music. One of the most performed and published composers of his generation; his music is now being embraced beyond Sweden’s borders. Among his earlier recordings are En svensk Markuspassion (A Swedish St. Mark Passion) and Jubilate.