Colours dance across the sky in a vivid demonstration of the Earth’s magnetic field. Many of us venture out into the cold for a glimpse at their beauty. The northern lights have been wrapped in mythology by cultures all over the world for centuries. Now, the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra along with the Greystone Singers and Aurora Voce will harness the power of this natural phenomenon in Nordic Light.
“It makes you feel like you’re in the middle of it all watching the night sky. The sounds explode, bleed and blur into each other.”
Choral conductor Jennifer Lang says this performance is an exceptionally rare opportunity. (Photo provided)
Choral conductor Jennifer Lang has always been fascinated by the northern lights and when she saw a performance of Ērik Ešenvalds’ Nordic Light complete with video projections, story, choir and orchestra, she was entranced.
“It was so incredibly powerful, sonically and visually,” says Lang. “It makes you feel like you’re in the middle of it all watching the night sky. The sounds explode, bleed and blur into each other. It feels very temporal and fleeting, you don’t know how long it’s going to last or what’s coming next.”
“This concert will take us all out of our comfort zone. It’s like an expedition.”
Nicolas Ellis will take the podium for this multimedia performance. (Maxime Girard-Tremblay)
Juno nominated, guest conductor Nicolas Ellis will return to lead the musicians in this immersive evening of music. For Ellis, taking the podium in a performance with this many elements and this much talent is all about preparation.
“This concert will take us all out of our comfort zone. It’s like an expedition,” says Ellis. “As conductor, you want to plan as much as you can ahead of time so when you start the adventure, you already know where the challenges will be. I’m super psyched!”
The program will also feature Marcus Goddard’s Life Emerging: Antarctica, Andrew Balfour’s Qilak and the Saskatoon Youth Orchestra will join the SSO for Jean Sibelius’ Finlandia, Op. 26.
Lang hopes the audience will appreciate the calibre of musicians and performance right at their fingertips.
“Being able to perform this piece in Saskatoon is truly a triumph for all the musicians. A major work like this is rarely undertaken,” says Lang. “I hope the audience is impressed with the magnitude. It’s our own sense of identity, what is magical and mystical about music and nature.”