Wilhelm Peterson-Berger (1867−1942)

Kantat vid Kungl. Teaterns i Stockholm 150-årsjubileum 18 januari 1923 för soli, kör och orkester (Opera-kantat) [Canata on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the Royal Theatre in Stockholm on 18 January, 1923, for soli, choir and orchestra (Opera cantata)]


I. Vårbrytning [Early spring]
II. Pastorale [Pastoral]
III. Ballad - Apollons intåg [Ballad - Apollo's entree]
IV. Bacchoståget [Bacchus procession]
V. Gudamötet [Meeting of the Gods]
VI. Musernas dans [Dance of the Muses]
VII. Segerhymn (Avslutningskör) [Victory Hymn (Choral Finale)]

  • Year of composition: Aug-Dec 1922 (lyrics printed 1923)
  • Work category: Opera, one act
  • Text author: Wilhelm Peterson-Berger
  • First performed: 18 January 1923 the Royal Opera (cond: Armas Järnefelt). Vocal soloists: David Stockman (Apollon [Apollo]), Åke Wallgren (Dionysos [Dionysus]). Solo quartet: Greta Söderman, Signe Schillander, David Stockman, Åke Wallgren
  • Duration: Approx. 30-40 min


2*.2.2.2 / / timp, perc, hp, pno / str

Solo voices/choir

Apollon [Apollo] (tenor)
Dionysos [Dionysus] (bass)
9 Song Goddesses: Polyhymnia (soprano), Urania (alto), Kleio [Clio] (alto), Kalliope [Calliope] (soprano), Melpomene (soprano), Thaleia [Thalia] (mezzo soprano), Terpsichore (mezzo-soprano, Euterpe (alto), Erato (mezzo-soprano)
Solo quartet: S.A.T.B.
Female choir (S.S.A.), Male choir (T.T.B.B.), Mixed choir (S.A.T.B.)

Examples of printed editions

Piano reduction [arrangement by Sten Beite, partly based on the composer's draft], published by Musikaliska Konstföreningen [the publishing house of the Swedish Art Music Society] (1942)

  • Location autograph: Musik- och teaterbiblioteket
  • Possible call no. and autograph comment: Z/Sv (A note on the autograph states: score corrected, simplyfied, revised autumn, 1935)


• Text is printed in Gustaf III:s opera. Minnesskrift utgiven med anledning av Kungl. Teaterns 150-årsjubileum 1773 18/1 1923 (Aktiebolaget Gunnar Tisells Tekniska Förlag, Ivar Hæggströms Boktryckeri A. B., Stockholm 1923)
Karlsson, Henrik: Wilhelm Peterson-Berger. Verkförteckning [List of works] (2004) [available at the Musik- och teaterbiblioteket]

Description of work

I. Vårbrytning [Early spring]: Andante A major - C minor - G-flat major 4/4 (C)
Mixed choir (S.A.T.B)

II. Pastorale [Pastoral]: Allegretto grazioso e con gioja A major 2/4 ('Attacca n:o III')
Solo quartet (S.A.T.B.)

III. Ballad - Apollons intåg [Ballad - Apollo's entree]: Andante tranquillo - Maestoso con moto E-flat minor - E-flat major alla breve, 3/4
Apollon [Apollo], Polyhymnia, Urania, Kleio [Clio], Kalliope [Calliope], Melpomene, Thaleia [Thalia], Terpsichore, Euterpe, Erato, Three part female choir (= the 9 Song Goddesses), Male choir (T.T.B.B.), Mixed choir (S.A.T.B.)

IV. Bacchoståget [Bacchus procession]: (Tempo marks missing) B-flat minor - E major - B-flat minor 3/2, 9/4 ("Attacca No 4")
Mixed choir (S.A.T.B.)

V. Gudamötet [Meeting of the Gods]: [Attacca] Poco tranquillo D major - D minor 4/4 (C)
Apollon [Apollo], Dionysos [Dionysus]

VI. Musernas dans [Dance of the Muses]: a) Andante con moto solenne C major 4/4 (C); b) Con moto grazioso F major - A minor - C major 2/4
Solo quartet (S.A.T.B.), Female choir (= the 9 Song Goddesses)

VII. Segerhymn (Avslutningskör) [Victory Hymn (Choral Finale)]: Con moto gajo e pomposo A major 3/4
Apollon [Apollo], Female choir (the 9 Song Goddesses), Mixed choir (S.A.T.B.)

Work comment

At the very end of the score (in autograph), the composer has written: The sketch of the score (in pencil), was completed on 10 January, 1923, after the first and the following three performances (by A. [Armas] Järnefelt). Due to the rush, there were a number of errors, as well as briefly drafted or not so well calculated parts. Moreover, the orchestra was too large and heavy. When, in the autumn of 1935, the author-composer scrutinised this work, he discovered these flaws, but however deemed it worth making a revision, which was immediately put into effect and was completed on 4 February, 1936.