Arne Nordheim Prize Concert – Portrait Jan Martin Smørdal

The winner of Norway’s highest composer award

Friday, 16 September, at 19:30–21:00
150–250 kr
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Meet Jan Martin Smørdal, winner of this year’s Nordheim prize, and join the celebrations!

Since 2001, the Arne Nordheim Composer’s Prize has been awarded to an innovative Norway based composer. It is given out every second year by the Department of Culture during the Ultima Festival.

For the first time in the history of the Prize, MUNCH will be the venue for the presentation of this year’s prize concert and ceremony.

Jan Martin Smørdal is both a musician and a composer. In the 2000s he performed regularly with Jenny Hval/Rockettothesky, Hanne Hukkelberg, Jessica Sligter, and his own 15 piece ensemble, Acoustic Accident. He is a co-founder of Ensemble neoN, a group of 12 forward thinking musicians that has made an important contribution to Oslo’s new music scene.

Jan Martin Smørdal (born 1978) is a composer and musician, and also co-founder and member of Ensemble neoN. Smørdal comes from the band scene with a focus on experimenting and improvisation. In the course of the last fifteen years he has become a highly sought-after and very active composer. Smørdal’s works spans from solo works, to pieces for orchestra, choir, and installations. Deeply motivated by music making as a social activity, much of Smørdal's music is created in close collaboration with the performers.

The Portrait Concert at MUNCH highlights the different aspects of Smørdal’s work and includes performers closely connected with his whole career as a composer. Flock of Me, a piece for flute and recordings of flute played by Jumi Murakami, reflects his interest in flocking movements and herd behaviour in nature, as a way of organising dynamic movements and structures in the sound. The performance space and audience seating and movements will be arranged in ‘flocks’ and other unconventional patterns.

His My Favorite Thing triology includes works for larger groups. The common theme is the idea of delving into your most powerful musical memories and creating something that builds on the intensity of a few brief, remembered moments. Tonight two of these are performed by percussion group Pinquins and ensemble neoN, the group Smørdal co-founded in 2008. Finally Jennifer Torrence will play the world premiere of a brand new percussion work composed especially for this occasion.

A great opportunity to hear a spread of work from this innovative and inventive composer.

18.00 Foyer
Jan Martin Smørdal: Flock of Me (2015–16)
[playback], 5 channel recordings of Yumi Murakami (flute)

19.30 Festsalen: Jan Martin Smørdal Portrait Concert
Jan Martin Smørdal: Répétitions II (2021)
Alessandra Rombolà – flute and 2 channel addcorder

My Favourite Thing 1 (2017)
Pinquins Percussion Trio: Jennifer Torrence, Sigrun Rogstad Gomnæs, Ane Marthe Sørlien Holen

Jessica Sligter: Shaping I (2022, WP)
JS (vocals, electronics), Karin Hellqvist (violin), Yumi Murakami (flute), Silje Aker Johnsen (voice, electronics)


Award Ceremony
Arne Nordheim’s Composer´s Prize 2022 to Jan Martin Smørdal
The prize will be awarded by Gry Haugsbakken, State Secretary, Ministry of Culture and Gender Equality
The prize will be motivated by Tanja Orning, chair of the jury


Jan Martin Smørdal: I/O - 5 parts separated by color (2022, WP)
Jennifer Torrence, percussion and performance
Ane Reiersen, lights

My Favourite Thing 2 (2015)
Magnus Loddgard, conductor

Ensemble neoN: Yumi Murakami (flutes), Signe Sõmer (clarinets), Ida Kristine Zimmermann Olsen (alto sax), Heloisa Amaral (piano), Andreas Karlsen (guitars), Silje Aker Johnsen (voice), Ane Marthe Sørlien Holen (percussion), Karin Hellqvist (violin), Inga Grytaas Byrkjeland (cello)

Ensemble neoN. Photo: Anna-Julia Granberg / BLUNDERBUSS


Alessandra Rombolà

Pre-recorded samples

Jennifer Torrence, Sigrun Rogstad Gomnæs, Ane Marthe Sørlien Holen


Magnus Loddgard


Ensemble neoN

In collaboration with