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Per Nørgård

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Per Nørgård (pronounced [ˈpʰeɐ̯ ˈnɶɐ̯ɡ̊ɒːˀ]) (born July 13, 1932) is a Danish composer.

Nørgård was born in Gentofte, Denmark. He studied with Vagn Holmboe at the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen, and subsequently with Nadia Boulanger in Paris. To begin with, he was strongly influenced by the Nordic styles of Jean Sibelius, Carl Nielsen and Vagn Holmboe. In the 1960s, Nørgård began exploring the modernist techniques of central Europe, eventually developing a serial compositional system based on the “infinity series” (Nørgård 1975), which he used in his Voyage into the Golden Screen, the Second and Third Symphonies, I Ching, and other works of the late 1960s and 70s (Mortensen [n.d.]). Later he became interested in the Swiss artist Adolf Wölfli, who inspired many of Nørgård’s works (Anon [n.d.]), including the 4th symphony, the opera Det Guddommelige Tivoli and Papalagi for solo guitar.

Nørgård has composed works in all major genres: six operas, two ballets, seven symphonies and other pieces for orchestra, several concertos, choral and vocal works, an enormous number of chamber works (among them ten string quartets) and several solo instrumental works. These include a number of works for the guitar, mostly written for the Danish guitarist Erling Møldrup: In Memory Of…

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