NODE / Brian Cliff Olguin for Ultima

Strokes of imagination

Oslo Sinfonietta I Anna Berg I Øyvind Mæland I György Kurtag

Friday, 13 September, at 19:30–20:45
200–300 kr

Children encountering the piano for the first time, observed composer György Kurtág, often fearlessly experiment, attack and caress it. Begun in 1973, his Játékok (Games) captures these spontaneous encounters, here arranged for ensemble by Oliver Cuendet.

Mischievous instrumental explorations also characterise the brand-new works for Oslo Sinfonietta by Anna Berg and Øyvind Mæland. Berg’s The Grammar of Ornament was inspired by the Vietnamese đànbầu. The instrument is believed to have been invented by children, their laughter echoing through the ancient lands as they toyed with a string and a stick. Berg transposes the đànbầu’s intricate ornamentation to the delicate strings of Guro Kleven Hagen’s violin.

In Strokes of Imagination, Øyvind Mæland is interested in the shifts between breaths and bow strokes, and other hindering transitions which musicians usually try to cover up. Rejecting classical performance ideasl, he delves into minuscule instrumental holes, cracks and glitches, letting the poetry of imperfection shape the music.


Øyvind Mæland: Strokes of Imagination for ensemble (2024, WP)

Anna Berg: The Grammar of Ornament for solo violin and ensemble (2024, WP)

György Kurtág: Játékok (1973-2010), arr. Oliver Cuendet (2016), selection

Øyvind Mæland. Photo: Knut Utler.

Anna Berg. Photo: Christina Raytsiz

Oslo Sinfonietta. Photo: Anna-Julia Granberg / BLUNDERBUSS.


  • Anna Berg
  • Øyvind Mæland
  • György Kurtág
  • Oliver Cuendet (arr. Kurtág)


  • Oslo Sinfonietta
  • Guro Kleven Hagen (solo violin)
  • Christian Eggen (conductor)

In collaboration with

  • Oslo Sinfonietta

Supported by

  • Kulturrådet (The Grammar of Ornament)
  • Det Norske Komponistfond (Strokes of Imagination)