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Flight Song was written as a gift to Dr. Anton Armstrong and the St. Olaf Choir. I had the pleasure of working with Armstrong and his choir in 2013 and their performance of my piece Even when He is silent was sublime. I was impressed not only by the artistic work, but also the personal development and safe environment Armstrong has given to so many young singers. With this piece I want to show my gratitude for their performances on tours all over Norway and the United States.
Kim André Arnesen
This is the first piece on which Kim and I worked together. I live in a house that overlooks two great British rivers, the Wye and the Severn, and the air is constantly alive with the sound of seabird wings and calls, so when Kim came to me with the idea of writing a piece for these amazing young musicians, the idea of flight as a metaphor for the beginning of a young adult life—and as a tribute to a great conductor—came to me first. A human life preparing to take off, and the movements of a conductor’s arm like the beating of a soul’s great wings, are images at the heart of this piece.