UNM 2023



Örnólfur Eldon Þórsson

Örnólfur Eldon Þórsson (IS, *1992) is a freelance composer based in Hamburg. Graduated in 2019 from HMTM Hannover with M.mus. in composition, where main teacher was Ming Tsao. Completed B.A. in composition at the Iceland Academy of Arts under Atli Ingólfsson Erasmus exchange at EMTA, Tallinn, with Helena Tulve. Compositions performed throughout Europe by ensembles such as Neue Vocalsolisten, MusikFabrik, CAPUT and Hamrahlíðarkórinn Since 2017 collaborating with Krõõt-Kärt Kaev (EE). Received the Klaus Huber award in 2017.

Grantee of Ingjaldssjóður 2018. Granted funding by RÚV/STEF's Composers' Fund for the compositions "Alchmies", "conduit" (collaboration with Kaev), and "kvikna". In 2022, granted 3 months from the Icelandic Artists' Salary Fund.

Previous UNMs: 2015, 2018, 2020.


trombone and live electronics

The material of Kvikna is based on analysis of the poem “Víti” by Jónas Hallgrímsson — a 19th century romantic — and modified by a feed of earthquake data collected from around the world.

The sound textures are informed by descriptions found in the poem:
"the mountain-splitting forces of the volcano";
"boiling blue water at the bottom of a crater";
and "cruel cries of death from a dark abyss, whence red flames are spewn"

The ambiguouity of the title offers interpretations such as:
sparkling of an idea,
becoming alive,
skinless flesh,
air turbulence.

Kvikna was commissioned by and written for Annaroosa Lampela (FI) with support from RÚV/STEF and Launasjóður Listamanna.

– Örnólfur Eldon Þórsson