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Meet the artists

Meet the artists: Ørjan Matre

En mann ikledd sort treningsjakke ser inn i kamera. Vi ser furutrær i bakgrunnen.

Written by: Anette Basso


Kode's Composer in residence 2023 is Ørjan Matre.

We were allowed to join him in his home at Fløen in Bergen. How does a composer work and live, what thoughts does he have about neighborhood? And what happens when the composer goes for a run?

Regi/Video: Frode Bakken.

Producer/Story: Anette Basso og Maria Tripodianos.

Composer in residence 2023: Ørjan Matre

Ørjan Matre (b. 1979) is the third composer featured in Kode's multi-year commitment to composition.

Matre is one of Norway's foremost composers, born and residing in Bergen. He belongs to a generation of Norwegian composers who early on explored and mastered the grand orchestral format, as exemplified by his breakthrough: "Four miniatures for orchestra" (2005).

Since then, Matre has explored a wide range of musical expressions. His repertoire includes solo works, chamber music, choral compositions, and electroacoustic music.

Matre continually challenges his technical proficiency through intricate and risk-taking instrumentation or by introducing quotations, instruments, and playing techniques that disrupt established musical configurations.

His solid craftsmanship contributes to the regular performance of his music, reaching a growing international audience. Matre won the Spellemann Prize for Composer of the Year in 2015 and 2018. Recently, he received the Music Publisher's Prize for 2022.

Our House: Program 2023

On May 14, a conversation between Matre and Kode's curator Monica Jangaard took place under the title "What is a modern composer?". Matre's works were presented alongside compositions by other Norwegian composers from the last decades, including Synne Skouen and Rolf Gupta.

In the home concert "Our House" on August 26, Matre opened the doors to his own housing cooperative in Fløenbakken, providing insight into his life. He curated a concert experience that traversed apartments, stairwells, and communal meeting spaces, engaging the audience throughout.

The music was performed by Halvor Festervoll Melien, Knut Christian Jansson, Erlend Apneseth, Jostein Stalheim, Martha Berit Belt, Hellen and Eidsvåg school band, and Krohnengen Brass Band, with poetry by Elin Osjord and Anders Bærheim.

This year's new commissioned work for Kode, Lyric Pieces II premiered in Troldsalen on November 24. In this piece, Matre continues exploring the intersection between his daily life and his role as a composer. Drawing inspiration from Edvard Grieg's Lyric Pieces, he re-composes the music, incorporating archive recordings from his everyday life.

The year concluded with a Christmas concert on December 2, featuring the Bergen Cathedral Choir presenting several of Matre's arrangements of well-known Christmas songs combined with more obscure folk tune variations.

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