The Tale of a Choral Commission

A new piece of choral music by internationally renowned Swedish composer Fredrik Sixten sets out to spread compassion, build bridges and strengthen the deep cultural bonds between the UK and Sweden. Amid an increasingly polarised world, Lux Mundi (Light of the world) offers a much-needed musical statement of hope for the future. 

The British and The Swedish share an ancestry that reaches back to the Vikings and a fascination for each other’s cultures, from design and food to nature and music. Light is also a symbol of hope the world over, as well as having a special significance in Sweden, land of the midnight sun. 

The Music

Lux Mundi is a breath-taking musical journey that takes you from darkness to light in three movements – Faith, Hope & Love – filled with delicious harmonies, soaring melodic lines and intricate rhythms. Polyphony blends with folk music, Baroque fugues and that special Nordic wistful longing – all in a light, contemporary style full of exciting surprises and moments of serenity. Sixten has used the beautiful and evocative language of King James Bible, selecting English texts that are eternally poignant. 

The Idea

This work was sparked in a conversation between soprano Maria Rivington and Sixten, where they discussed the musical DNA that the UK and Sweden share. This notion then developed into an exciting collaboration between the English Baroque Choir and the London Nordic Choir. 

“We wanted to celebrate the musical language of my home country Sweden and the undisputed riches of the choral tradition in England. We imagined a vocal tapestry that tells of our different cultures, our common musical heritage and the times we now live in, looking to the future together in a positive ‘Nordic Light’,” says Rivington.

The Concerts

Jointly commissioned by the two choirs, Lux Mundi will have its world premiere on Saturday 16 May 2020 in St. John’s Church, Hyde Park, London, and its first performance in Sweden in The Eric Ericson Hall, Stockholm on Sunday 5 July 2020. 

In the hands of choirs representing two strong European choral traditions and under the batons of musical directors Jeremy Jackman (of King’s Singers fame) and Carina Einarson (Swedish choral director and former student of Eric Ericson), Lux Mundi will be one of the most memorable musical events in 2020.

In-depth background

Curious about the longer version of the journey the commission has taken? Please click below & read on!