Ola Gjeilo Ola Gjeilo

Cover Ola Gjeilo

Album info



Label: Decca

Genre: Classical

Subgenre: Instrumental

Album including Album cover Booklet (PDF)

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  • 1Ubi Caritas05:22
  • 2The Spheres04:17
  • 3The Ground03:39
  • 4Sanctus (London)04:48
  • 5The Crossing03:38
  • 6Northern Lights04:09
  • 7The Lake Isle06:18
  • 8Serenity (O Magnum Mysterium)05:09
  • 9Tundra03:36
  • 10Reflections01:54
  • 11Sacred Heart04:42
  • Total Runtime47:32

Info for Ola Gjeilo

Norwegian born Ola Gjeilo (Yay-Lo) is one of the most frequently performed composers in the choral world; his debut album on a major record label is slated for release in April 2016 on Decca Classics. An accomplished composer and pianist, improvisations over his own choral works have become a trademark of his collaborations, and feature within the eleven tracks on this self-titled album – “Ola Gjeilo”. Norwegian by birth, Ola’s soundworld has evolved a style that is both contemporary and familiar, cinematic and evocative.

Ola Gjeilo’s works are performed by two exceptional vocal ensembles: the ‘undoubtedly gifted’ (The Times) VOCES8 and the award-winning Tenebrae (‘phenomenal’ – The Times.) This rich vocal texture mixed with Ola Gjeilo on piano, and combinations of acoustic guitar (Kristian Kvalvaag), cello (Matthew Sharp), string quartet, and The Chamber Orchestra of London (led by Thomas Gould) make this lush, harmonius album a true musical feast.

“Working with two of the absolute premier choirs in the world was an incredible, humbling experience – their musicianship touched me to the core. I would soak up every elegant phrase ending, every perfectly blended chord, every exquisite inflection I’d never heard before – and knowing that it would all be released on the legendary Decca label made it all extra special.”- Gjeilo

Lead tracks on the album include Tundra, which received its world premiere play on ClassicFM’s Aled Jones show on 7th February; Ubi caritas, The Ground and The Lake Isle. To all these tracks, Gjeilo brings a truly contemporary feel to the traditional, making the album – Ola Gjeilo – both accessible to first-time choral listeners and a new enticing experience for choral fans – serving to create a restful and uplifting experience for all.

Born in Norway, Ola Gjeilo moved to New York at the age of 23 to study composition at the Juilliard School. Here, Ola developed his distinctly modern approach to traditional choral music, drawing inspiration from his Nordic background, improvisers and composers from Morten Lauridsen, John Adams, Alexandre Desplat, John Williams to Elgar, Vaughan Williams and Tavener. Gjeilo is particularly passionate about playing with grand cinematic-esque melodies and improvisation, describing his own composition style as “…a lyrical mix of improvisation and classical”.

Gjeilo is also currently composer-in-residence with VOCES8, who have now established themselves as one of the ‘most versatile’ (The Telegraph) vocal ensembles in Europe. VOCES8 will perform his works on tour throughout the United States during February and March 2016, and will be joined by Ola for numerous big concerts with the American Choral Director’s Association (ACDA)

„ . . [a] stunning new Norwegian choral work that might be the next big thing in classical music . . . Ola Gjeilo draws on influences from Norwegian culture to create modern choral music of exquisite beauty. Radiant vocal textures are backed by shimmering strings and a hypnotic piano, performed by Gjeilo himself.“ (Aled Jones, Classic FM, London)

Ola Gjeilo, Klavier
Nigel Short, Direktor
Chamber Orchestra of London
Thomas Gould, Leitung
String Quartet:
Thomas Gould, Violine
Ciaran McCabe, Violine
Jon Thorne, Viola
Matthew Sharp, Cello

Ola Gjeilo
(pronounced Yay-lo) was born in Norway in 1978, and moved to the United States in 2001 to begin his composition studies at the Juilliard School in New York City, from which he graduated with a Master’s Degree in ’06, after two years at the Royal College of Music in London. Ola’s published concert works are performed all over the world, and his debut recording as a pianist-composer, the lyrical cross- over album Stone Rose, was released to critical acclaim in 2007 on the 2L label. Many of Ola’s choral works are featured on Phoenix Chorale/Charles Bruffy’s CD on the Chandos label, Northern Lights (2012), which is devoted entirely to his music for choir. He especially enjoys writing music for choir, orchestra/symphonic winds, and the piano, while as a pianist, his main passion is impro- visation, either solo or over his own ensemble works. Presently a full-time composer based in the United States, Ola is also very interested in film, and his music draws a lot of inspiration from movies and cinematic music.

Booklet for Ola Gjeilo

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