Une charogne by Kristin Warfvinge

In the autumn of 2021, Gehrmans Musikförlag and the Swedish Society of Composers launched a call for works by female and non-binary composers. Of the many pieces submitted, six are nominated by an external committee and published in 2022 and 2023. The sixth work in the series is a powerful setting of the 19th-century French poet Baudelaire's poem Une charogne – A carcass, where Kristin Warfvinge lets the music shine and the text fall apart like the rotting corpse.

Charles Baudelaire's poem Une charogne (A carcass) has been the subject of research and fascination since it was written in 1861. Kristin Warfvinge was captured by the contrast between the bright summer day and the stinking, decaying remains of an animal on the path where the lovers walk. With melodic leaps and appoggiaturas in the theme, she captures the brilliance of the sun, which both illuminates and accelerates decay with its heat. Dense timbres in the bass parts provide a dark background to the ambiguous and musty French lyrics, which fall apart to finally come together. Kristin Warfvinge has created an enigmatic, contradictory and beautiful work for SATB divisi.

Kristin Warfvinge
Kristin Warfvinge (b. 1990) is a Malmö-based composer, sound artist, and conductor. She is active primarily in the south of Sweden and Copenhagen. She obtained her professional education from studies at The Gotland School of Music Composition, The Royal College of Music in Stockholm and the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen. As a composer, her main focus is choral and orchestral music. In these setups she often explores the relation between sound and space and experiments with conceptual themes such as perception, change or control. In addition to this, she also does live electronic performances, often with home-built instruments and body movement.



Music: Kristin Warfvinge (1990–)
Text: Charles Baudelaire (1821–1867)
SATB divisi, avanced
Durata appr 7 minutes
Text in French (English translation in the score)


#swedishchoralmusic 2022/23
is a collaboration between Gehrmans Musikförlag and The Swedish Society of Composers. It aims to balance the eqality in choral music, Swedish and international. The six pieces chosen are published by Gehrmans Musikförlag and spread to Swedish and international conductors and choirs. There will be one film for each piece, presenting the music and its composer, released in the series #swedishchoralmusic. The pieces are nominated by a committee of well known Swedish and international choir professionals. All pieces are anonymized before evaluation.

Committee of #swedishchoralmusic 2022/23
Karin Rehnqvist, composer and Professor of composition at the Royal College of Music in Stockholm
Krista Audere, Latvian conductor and winner of the 2021 Eric Ericson Award
Bengt Ollén, Choir Leader of the Year 2021
Simon Arlasjö, conductor and member of the board of The Swedish Choral Conductors' Association

Questions about the series? Please contact Janna Vettergren, producer and project manager of #swedishchoralmusic: janna.vettergren@gehrmans.se