Carl Nielsen: Music is Life

Odense City Museum’s international travelling exhibition about Carl Nielsen, the composer, is an aesthetic, sensory experience with focus on music, pictures, and sound.

The work takes precedence over the man and the main idea has been to piece together fragments of Carl Nielsen's interesting life story rather than presenting an extensive linear narrative. Visitors may choose to enjoy the exhibition in its entirety or to immerse themselves in a few themes, and both approaches will result in a sublime experience. The selected stories are presented with humour, diversity, and an element of surprise.

'Carl Nielsen - music is life' consists of seven modules which have been created using prime material. The content is elegantly presented on both the front and reverse sides of the modules. These are extremely flexible and may be arranged in a number of different ways depending on the specific layout of the individual exhibition gallery. The exhibition is visually enticing, since there is something to catch the eye on both sides of the modules, including large images and the illuminated bronze casting of the original sketch for the The Genius of Music - one of the sculptor and artist Anne Marie Carl-Nielsen's monuments to her husband.

The exhibition focuses on the auditory experience, and sensor-controlled sound has been installed in five of the seven modules. This gives visitors an opportunity to experience different aspects of Carl Nielsen's comprehensive and versatile oeuvre and decide for themselves how much they wish to take in.

This means that his Symphony No. 4, for example, is played in full enabling visitors to listen in while they are level with the particular module playing it. In addition to this, it is possible to listen to Nielsen's piano music exemplified by the Humoresque-Bagatelles, the Overture from the opera Masquerade as well as the song John the Roadman in four different versions.

The exhibition also includes two newlyproduced films: a biographical film featuring both photos and moving images of Carl Nielsen while an English speaker recounts the most important people and events in his life, and one including concert footage of the legendary conductor Leonard Bernstein conducting Carl Nielsen's Symphony No. 3, Sinfonia Espansiva. The second film forms part of the theme 'Carl Nielsen's international breakthrough'. Find information about all the themes here.

'Carl Nielsen - music is life' had a brilliant first showing at a series of concerts featuring the New York Philharmonic conducted by Alan Gilbert, Music Director, in Avery Fisher Hall, Lincoln Center, New York, in October 2012.

Pre-concert talks /lectures

Odense City Museums offer pre-concert talks and special lectures on Carl Nielsen and his music. Curator Ida-Marie Vorre ably presents subjects spanning a general introduction to Carl Nielsen's life and his oeuvre as well as individual themes including, for example, tailoring her lecture to a specific concert programme. Pre-concert talks/lectures are available in both Danish and English.

Download info sheet:
Music is life
Download Manual:
Set up manual - music is life
Facts and information
Ida-Marie Vorre


Odense City Museums
Overgade 48
DK-5000 Odense C
Tel +45 6551 4601
CVR: 39156040
EAN: 5790002433825


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