Edvard Grieg 

          (1843-1907)

 

Edvard Grieg was born in Bergen in the western part of Norway.  At the age of six he received music lessons from his mother. At 15  he was sent to the Leipzig Conservatory (Germany) to study music.  After studying there he left the Conservatory as a full-fledged musician and composer, and left to live in Denmark, where he met his wife, Nina. As Grieg grew older, he became conscious of the musical potential of his own country's folk-culture and began to promote Norwegian nationalism by writing pieces based on traditional popular music.  In 1968 Grieg finished what has become one of his best-known pieces, the Piano Concerto in A minor.  Grieg's talents were put to a test when Henrik Ibsen asked him to write the incidental music to "Per Gynt" This was no easy task for Grieg, but the music he wrote became one of the major works of the 1870's.  In 1874, Grieg moved back to his home town Bergen, where he purchased a beautiful house in the Swiss style called Troldhaugen (the Troll Hill). Today Troldhaugen is a museum which is a main attraction of the city of Bergen.  

 

The characteristic thing about Grieg is that, whether in the concert hall or at home in the living room, it is impossible to avoid noticing the fresh breeze of the Norwegian landscape in his music. It encompasses the snow-clad mountain tops in June, deep blue fjords with fruit trees ranked on the mountain sides, wild streams on the mountain plateaus, and giant trolls in the dark forests or great mountains.  There are several descriptions of  Grieg wandering in the beautiful surroundings of Western Norway where he lived and composed at his home and his summer cabin.

 

Music Samples related to trolls:

The March of the Trolls

Wedding day at Trolldhaugen

Hall of the Mountain King   

(The mountain King was a huge troll that lived in "Dovrefjell", a mountain area in the middle of Norway

 

 

 

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