Simon  Christensen
Photo: Jens Svankjær

Simon Christensen

(1971-)

Simon Christensen · Portrait 

Like many 21st century composers who came of age in the closing years of the previous millennium, Simon Christensen has had an extensive background in a variety of musical genres, and as a result creates music that is deeply informed by all of them. But what sets him apart from most composers of his generation is that while all of his influences make sense once you know what they are, the resultant music he has been creating over the course of the past decade somehow transcends genre considerations entirely and is something completely fresh and new.



While one might trace Christensen’s meticulously notated scores to his rigorous composition training (at the Royal Academy of Music in his native Copenhagen and the Conservatoire Nationale Superieur de Paris), attribute his careful attention to sonorities and a systemic approach to their manipulation to background in live electronic performance (as a laptop artist in the duo Mobile Soundscapes or his use of a variety of analog modules in the group Kundi Bombo), and assume his obsession with pulse is related to his activities earlier on as a rock drummer (in the band New Paragraphs), Christensen’s very complex looking scores tend to sound much simpler, many of his most remarkable timbral details are achieved with purely acoustic instrumental combinations, and his skewed rhythmic sensibility ultimately has little to do with most rock music.


A big part of the impact of Christensen’s music comes from his ability to harness the off-kilter. His rhythmic palate includes cascades of mismatched tuplet sequences (e.g. quintuplets followed by sextuplets then septuplets) as well as polyrhythms exploring the incompatible overlapping of such sequences (e.g. seven against three then six against five, etc.). He also frequently utilizes a much broader range of possible pitches (in addition to the standard chromatic scale in 12-tone equal temperament, Christensen not only adds quarter-tones but also eighth tones, a variety of harmonics and sub-harmonics, and sounds with imprecise pitches. Whether it is a small intimate chamber piece or a large scale ensemble work, Christensen’s recent music has an unmistakably identifiable sound.


Excerpts from article by Frank J. Oteri (March 2012)

Selected works:

TRIBUTES - Pulse (2010-2011)

Toward Nothingness (2009)

Circuiting The Stroke (2008-2009)

The 1971 Connection (2008)

The Elastic Track (2006)
 

Available Works

All categories Solo 2-6 Instruments 7+ Instruments Choir Orchestra Educational Music Other

  1. PNEUMA

    2020 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  2. CARVED IN STONE

    2020 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  3. ENSEMBLE

    2018 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  4. Three Years On

    2016 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  5. The Whistle Quartet

    2018 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  6. Deadlock, Drifting . . . .

    2017 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  7. Fluctuate only

    2017 • Simon Christensen

    Solo

  8. Slack Water

    2016 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  9. Rockin' Sine Slow

    2016 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  10. Zing Spiral for violin

    2016 • Simon Christensen

    Educational Music

  11. Zing Spiral for piano

    2015 • Simon Christensen

    Educational Music

  12. Piano Piece Anno 2015

    2015 • Simon Christensen

    Solo

  13. Untitled

    2015 • Simon Christensen

    Solo

  14. Afore

    2015 • Simon Christensen

    Choir

  15. Chamber Cinema Set

    2014 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  16. Manifest

    2013 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  17. Caccini Monodies

    2013 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  18. Feed Lifting Sound

    2013 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  19. Octet

    2012 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  20. Monody

    2012 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  21. Arccos Fallen Tune

    2012 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  22. TRIBUTES - Pulse

    2011 • Simon Christensen

    Other

  23. Circular Music

    2009 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  24. The 1971 Connection

    2008 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  25. Sized the Uneven

    2009 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  26. Towards Nothingness

    2009 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  27. Circuiting the Stroke

    2009 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  28. Music à 3

    2006 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  29. The Elastic Track

    2006 • Simon Christensen

    Orchestra

  30. Parade Cracks

    2005 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  31. The Sax's Track 1 & 2

    2005 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  32. Music à 2 Anno 2012

    2012 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  33. Extraction

    2002 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  34. Saxofilia

    2003 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  35. Happiness in Slavery

    2001 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  36. Studies

    2002 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  37. Rapprochement

    2001 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  38. Concerto for Harp, Sinfonietta and two Conductors

    2000 • Simon Christensen

    7+ Instruments

  39. Grace

    2001 • Simon Christensen

    2-6 Instruments

  40. Piano Concerto

    1999 • Simon Christensen

    Orchestra

  41. Variationer

    1999 • Simon Christensen

    Orchestra




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    Simon Christensen 50 years today

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    Significant work grants for Edition·S composers

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    DVD release · Simon Christensen