Nielsen The Fog is Lifting Opus 41 for Flute and Piano or Harp


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Nielsen The Fog is Lifting Opus 41 for Flute and Piano or Harp

Nielsen The Fog is Lifting Opus 41 for Flute and Piano or Harp

Publisher-Wilhelm Hansen


This piece originates from Carl Nielsen’s incidental music for “Moderen.” This musical composition is accompanied by text penned by Helge Rode. Rode’s enchanting play revolves around the captivating tale of a kidnapped son’s triumphant return. In this wondrous piece, the music harmoniously complements the opening scene, wherein the King witnesses a poignant moment of a mother bidding farewell to her son amidst the dissipating fog. This particular composition stands as one of the most renowned among Nielsen’s works. The last piece is the flute solo from Aladdin.

Carl Nielsen

Carl Nielsen (1865-1931), was a violinist, conductor, and Denmark’s foremost composer, particularly admired for his symphonies.

Nielsen studied at the Royal Conservatory in Copenhagen from 1884 to 1886. He intermittently served as a violinist in the court orchestra at Copenhagen from 1886 to 1905. Subsequently, he held the positions of Kapellmeister at the Royal Theatre (1908–14) and conductor of the Copenhagen Musical Society (1915–27). In 1915, he began teaching at the Royal Conservatory, where he became director in 1931, shortly before his death.

While Romanticism influenced his early works, Nielsen’s later style displayed a powerful fusion of chromatic and often dissonant harmony, solid contrapuntal structure, concentrated motivic treatment, and bold tonal extensions with frequent polytonal passages.

His six symphonies, composed between 1890 and 1925, are notable for their forceful and articulated tonal progressions. The best known among them are Symphony No. 2 (1902; The Four Temperaments), Symphony No. 3 (1911; Sinfonia Espansiva), and Symphony No. 4 (1916; The Inextinguishable).

Additionally, Nielsen wrote three concerti—for violin (1911), flute (1926), and clarinet (1928)—and two operas, Saul og David (1902) and Maskarade (1906), the latter being widely recognized as the Danish “national opera.” He also composed four string quartets, two quintets, and various choral and keyboard works. His songs based on Danish folk traditions earned considerable acclaim.

Born into a poor family in rural Funen, Nielsen spent his childhood playing in his father’s amateur orchestra and working as a military musician in Odense. Accepted into the Royal Danish Academy of Music in 1884, he studied under Niels W. Gade and J.P.E. Hartmann. After graduating, Nielsen played violin in The Royal Danish Orchestra from 1889 to 1905, later becoming the concertmaster and conducting many of his own works.

In honour of his 60th birthday, Denmark celebrated nationwide, and he became the director of the Royal Danish Academy of Music towards the end of his life.

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