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Dionysos (2016)


for chamber ensemble

commissioned for Danish Chamber Players by

Rønnebæksholm as part of a composer-in-residence project

Dionysos var vinens og ekstasens gud i græsk mytologi. Når de græske mænd mødtes til symposion for at drikke sig fulde, var Dionysos med som gæst.


Dionysos var et produkt af en af Zeus' utallige affærer. Zeus havde forelsket sig i kongedatteren Semele fra Theben. Zeus' hustru Hera brød sig ikke om den forbindelse, og hun lokkede Zeus til at bevise sin guddommelighed over for Semele. Zeus tog udfordringen op, men hans gudelige kræfter var for stærke og Semele dør, da hun rammes af hans lyn. Zeus redder hendes endnu ufødte barn ved at sy fostret ind i sit eget lår. Herfra springer Dionysos ud, da tiden er inde - og bliver siden opfostret af nymfer og satyrer.


Dionysos ses ofte afbildet i selskab med satyrer - små festglade, gedeagtige mænd med hale og oprejst lem. Sammen med hans kvindelige tilbedere, mæneaderne, rejste de festende rundt i verden sammen med Dionysos for at sprede det glade budskab og dyrke vinen og sanseligheden.


Ikke alle var lige begejstrede for den vilde gud. Eftersom det især var kvinderne han lokkede ud i bjergene for at drikke og danse (og det, der var værre!), var mange mænd skeptiske og forsøgte at stoppe festen. Kong Pentheus gjorde (ifølge Euripides) et sådant forgæves forsøg, og som straf gjorde Dionysos ham vanvittig og lod ham iklædt dametøj flå i stykker af sin egen mor og sine mostre, der alle havde givet sig hen til vinguden.


Dette farverige medlem af den Olympiske familie får her sit musikalske portræt. En munter hyldest til vildskaben, anarkiet, livsnydelsen og beruselsen - uden dog helt at overse også de monomane og destruktive sider af heraf...

John Frandsen



Dionysos was the Greek god of wine. When Greek men met at a symposion to drink, Dionysos was their guest.


Dionysos was the result of one of Zeus' numerous love affairs. Zeus had fallen in love with Princess Semele of Theben. His wife Hera didn't approve this connection, and she persuaded him to unfold his divinty in front of Semele. Zeus accepted the challenge, but unfortunately his power was too strong: Semele was killed by one of his flashlights. Zeus saved her unborn baby by weaving the embryo into his thigh. From there Dionysos came into the world in due time - to be brought up by nymphs and satyres.


Dionysos is often seen in company with satyres. They are small, happy goat-like men with a small tail and erected phallos. Together with his female worshippers, the maenads, they travelled around the world spreding the good tidings of wine and extacy and sensuality.


Not everybody were happy with the wild god. Since many of his followers were women who joined him into the woods to celebrate a life of drinking and dancing (and what was even worse...), many noble and honest men were sceptic and tried to bring the party to an end. According to Euripides, King Pentheus made such efforts in vain, and Dionysos punished him by dressing him up in womens' clothes and letting his own mother and aunts (who had for long indulged themselves to the wine god) tear him into pieces.


This joyous member of the Olympic Family has now been given a musical portrait. A cheerful tribute to wildness, anarchy, intoxication and enjoyment of life - whithout entirely neglecting the dark, monomaniac and destructive aspects of all this...

Partitur score


Stemmer parts

kontakt komponisten



The piece is part of the

Olympic Suite

STORSTRØMS KAMMERENSEMBLE

Koncertoptagelse

Stavnsholtkirken, Farum 2. november 2016