Björk Releases Her First Ever Collection of Sheet Music – 34 Scores for Piano, Organ, Harpsichord and Celeste

Björk Releases Her First Ever Collection of Sheet Music – 34 Scores for Piano, Organ, Harpsichord and Celeste

Björk – 34 scores for piano, organ, harpsichord and celeste

The first collection of sheet music from Björk, 34 Scores for Piano, Organ, Harpsichord and Celeste, is set for release June 5 by Wise Publications. Inspired by her 2009 project Biophilia, Björk set out to reimagine digital music notation for the current, music-sharing world — in hopes that people the world over would bring her music into their homes.

“I was curious about the difference of midi (digital notation) and classical notation and enthusiastic in blurring the lines and at which occasions and how one would share music in these new times,” says Björk. “What is the difference of karaoke and the lyrical recitals of the 19th century? Maybe I should share digital notation that people could connect to their synths or do harpsichord versions of electronic beats to enjoy in the living rooms and hopefully families singalong to.”

With longtime collaborator Jónas Sen, Björk gathered her string, choir, vocal and brass arrangements from through the years and began arranging them for keyboards.

“There are three levels to these keyboard arrangements,” says Sen. “In one we simply transcribed the songs from the original to the keyboard. In the next level we arranged them so they sound different from the originals, yet convincing for the keyboard instrument in question. On the third level the songs are radically different from the original, almost like they are new compositions.”

Björk asked M/M (Paris), the French design house who she has worked with for many years, to create a new font for the notes, in the same way they have for letters, which was then arranged by Notengrafik Berlin.

“We met Björk in 1998, she was compiling her videos into a monograph, ‘Volumen,’” says M/M (Paris). “She was also writing and composing Vespertine. At the turn of the second millenium, she was turning into a new character that once wore a swan dress at the Oscars. To celebrate its birth we created and designed a typography, ‘The Allegrette.’ Words written with this alphabet looked as if unraveled on a single thread from Björk’s mouth. It became instantly Björk’s Vespertine typographical voice. Since then she has commissioned us to design a typeface to accompany the birth of each of her new ‘musical characters.’ For Biophilia in 2007, one of her most ‘musicologist’ projects, we designed a typeface to be used by her exclusively for her music notation, the voice of her music language.”

Björk has been performing her arrangements all over the world this year — at Harpa Hall in Reykjavík and The Auditorio in Mexico City, and will play the Disney Hall in Los Angeles May 30 alongside her Björk Digital exhibition.

 

“in the autumn of 2009 i sat down and wanted to decipher and reevaluate what musical education meant to me. the frustrated musicologist in me went ahead and completed the educational biophilia which since has been taught all around the world and is now a permanent part of the Scandinavian curriculum

i also wanted to question how i felt about musical documentation, when cds were slowly becoming obsolete, i was curious about the difference of midi (digital notation) and classical notation and enthusiastic in blurring the lines and at which occasions and how one would share music in these new times. what is the difference of karaoke and the lyrical recitals of the 19th century? can one meet at bonfires and sing techno songs? (well icelanders do obvs) maybe i should share digital notation that people could connect to their synths or do harpsichord versions of electronic beats to enjoy in the living rooms and hopefully families singalong to 

100 years ago most music was shared through scores, does that even apply to today? and if so how?

from these questions i started working with jónas sen on gathering together my string, choir, vocal and brass arrangements through the years and arranging them for different keyboards such as organs, pianos, celestas and harpsichords.

i also talked to my longtime collaborators m/m and asked them to design a font for notes in the same way they would for letters. that of course became technically almost impossible but we believe we have now somehow found a program were everyone can design their own fonts to align gracefully to their music

and last but not least: as a soft feminist stance i decided to put importance on my arrangements through the years (i feel still today most people are not aware that i have done the majority of the choir, brass, string and vocal arrangements myself through the years) by doing concerts where we have transformed all these arrangements over to strings to emphasize that part of my work. so far we have played albert hall, harpa hall in reykjavík, the auditorio in mexico city and will be playing the disney hall on the 30th of may. and i will be singing on top”

i hope you like it

warmthness
björk

The Anchor Song – Debut  
  Sun In My Mouth – Vespertine
Venus As A Boy – Debut  
  Desired Constellation – Medúlla
Cover Me – Post  
  Oceania – Medúlla
Isobel – Post  
  Pleasure Is All Mine – Medúlla
Bachelorette – Homogenic  
  Where Is The Line – Medúlla
Immature – Homogenic  
  Gratitude – Drawing Restraint 9 OST
Joga – Homogenic  
  Declare Independence – Volta
  Notget – Vulnicura  
  The Dull Flame Of Desire – Volta
Unravel – Homogenic  
  My Juvenile – Volta
I’ve Seen It All – Selmasongs  
  Pneumonia – Volta
New World – Selmasongs  
  Vertebrae by Vertebrae – Volta
Aurora – Vespertine  
  Atom Dance – Vulnicura
Mother Heroic – B-Side to ‘Hidden Place’
  Black Lake – Vulnicura
Vespertine  
  Stonemilker – Vulnicura
Pagan Poetry – Vespertine  
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