The Nightingale

The “idea” of combining the recorder with a choir is certainly nothing new; the recorder has joined the human voice in song for almost as long as the instrument has existed. The recorder is in a sense the closest instrument to the human voice, producing a pure sound without mechanisms, reeds or elaborate mouthpieces to alter the tone. However, until recently, few contemporary composers have explored the expressive potential that this combination can deliver.

A recurring theme of each of the four highly personal and distinctive works on this program is a contemplation of nature and humanity. Beginning with Latvian composer Ugis Praulins magical adaptation of Andersen’s beloved fairy tale, we traverse the darker realms of the human heart in Sunleif Rasmussen’s setting of Inger Christensen’s confessional response to Wallace Steven’s “Thirteen Ways of Looking at a Blackbird.” Young Danish composer Peter Bruun provides us a glimpse into Gerard Manley Hopkins secretive mysticism while Daniel Börtz, dean of Swedish composers, holds us rapt in adoration as his celestial angel-bird soars above the extraordinary virtuoso singing of the Danish National Vocal Ensemble.

Once again, Michala Petri has proven herself not only the unquestioned master of the recorder, but her visionary approach to programming and commitment to expanding her instrument’s repertoire into the 21st century make this an absolutely essential disc for fans of Michala, choral music, Nordic composers, and contemporary music with a HEART as well as with a “system.”

“It also goes without saying that Michala Petri has no peer today as a master of her instrument, and she wrings more color and expressive intensity from the recorder than you ever believed possible.”
- David Hurwitz,

  • Michala Petri has performed more than 4000 concerts in the worlds leading festivals and Concert Halls,and has broken down the boundaries of her instrument, the recorder.. Since youth she has followed her wish for musical expansion in various ways, through commissioning more than 150 new works, - including more than 30 recorder concertos, through dialogue with other musical cultures and through developing new playing techniques.


    Michala Petri

  • A choir with many facets


    Danish National Vocal Ensemble

  • Conductor Stephen Layton was born 1966, the son of a church organist.


    Stephen Layton

  • The Faroe Islands are an archipelago of 18 mountainous islands located halfway between Scotland and Iceland in the Northeast Atlantic. Existing under Danish control since 1388, they are currently a self-governing nation under the external sovereignty of the Kingdom of Denmark and possess a distinctive Nordic language and culture. Owing both to their isolated geography and the influence of Danish culture, Faroese art music is still a relatively new phenomenon, though the islands boast a variety of rich vocal music traditions, both in terms of a distinctive hymnody and many ballads and folks songs, which were until the lifting of the Danish ban in 1938, the only means of preserving the Faroese language.


    Sunleif Rasmussen

  • Peter Bruun was born in Århus, Denmark in 1968 where his first musical influences were British pop-rock groups like Duran Duran, Simple Minds and Spandau Ballet.


    Peter Bruun

  • Born in Osby, Sweden 1943, Daniel Börtz is today considered one of the most important composers in Sweden's musical history.


    Daniel Börtz

  • In contrast to some contemporary composers who have chosen to pursue a difficult and narrow artistic path, struggling over arcane theories and systems, Latvian composer Uģis Prauliņš has embraced virtually every style of music as a potential resource for creative exploration. Prauliņš grew up listening to the music of progressive-rock groups such as Gentle Giant and King Crimson as well as Scandinavian Heavy Metal and as a student, performed as keyboardist in his own progressive-rock group Salve and later in the folk-fusion rock band Vecas Majas.


    Uģis Prauliņš


The Nightingale

Gramophone UK, The Latvian composer weaves Michala Petri`s tweeting recorders around his singers and an ever-present, uncannily natural evocation of the nightingale itself.


The Nightingale

Magazine Choir and Organ (UK)4 out of 5 star

Brian Morton

The Nightingale

Music Web International (UK)He takes the recorder up high, infiltrates troubadour warmth and has constructed a rich, warm, avid setting, clearly responding to Andersen’s texts with imagination and flair.

Jonathan Woolf

The Nightingale

Magazine Gramophone (UK) Stephen Layton steers his peerlessly virtuoso musicians through this electric and innovative mix with his customary polish and dramatic energy.

Malcolm Riley

The Nightingale

Magazine Musical Pointers (UK) Tremendous texts and marvellous music for each one.

Peter Grahame Woolf

The Nightingale

Klassisk Magazine (DK) SOM FØDT TIL HINANDEN 5 stars

Christine Christiansen

The Nightingale

Music Magazine Klassik Heute, Germany- Wertung: 10 / 10 / 10 "CD of the week!!

Heinz Braun 14.03.2012

The Nightingale

Magazine (UK)Stephen Layton directs with style, and the disc is spectacularly engineered.

Graham Rickson

The Nightingale

Magazine Howard Schmidt (UK) PURE MAGIC- 'Don't miss it.'

Howard Smith

The Nightingale

Magazine Piccicato, Luxemburg, - Alle Chorsänger, die sich auch für zeitgenössische Choirmusik interessieren, werden an dieser CD mit Weltersteeinspielungen von Werken für Blockflöte und Chor Gefallen finden.


The Nightingale

Magazine, Germany - Hervorragend interpretiert und aufgenommen.

Christian Vitalis

The Nightingale

Sächische Zeitung ( Reichweite 710.000)"Grenzlos nah am Geschehen" - For Danish recorder player Michala Petri, nothing seems impossible. Here, she sings like a Nightingale, with all the brilliant sound technology to capture that moment perfectly.

Karsten Blüthgen

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