mixed chorus

Anders Hillborg composed his Muoaiyouum…, for unaccompanied sixteen-part chorus, in 1983 on a commission from the Rikskonserter (the Swedish National Concert Institute), and the work was first performed the same year by Stockholm’s Mikaeli Choir. In 1985 Hillborg produced the slightly longer version of the piece that appears on this evening’s programme. In the published score, the composer describes the work as “a study in which the greatest possible accuracy of sound, pulse and dynamics is aimed for.” Hillborg’s highly original treatment of the text-less chorus generates some breath taking choral textures, resembling at times the hypnotically repetitive, slowly and subtly shifting sonic mists of minimalism, and elsewhere Hillborg manages to evoke the sound world of electroacoustic music. Yet, as Birgitta Huldt has observed, Muoaiyouum… also “has points of contact with the kinds of music produced by Buddhist monks and Mongolian priests.”