Royal Norwegian Consulate General, New York
The Norwegian Consulate in New York played a leading role in popularising Norwegian music in New York and throughout the USA. A great deal is owed to Berit Brevig, who was music consultant at the consulate from 1986 to 2008. In 1990, she and her husband, the trombonist and conductor Per Brevig, founded the Grieg Society in New York. From the very beginning, she worked as the society’s secretary, and she was involved in more than one hundred events featuring Norwegian music and art organised in and around New York.
Berit and Per Brevig have done a great deal to popularise Arne Nordheim’s music in the USA. Per Brevig was first trombonist in the orchestra of the Metropolitan Opera for twenty years, and he also taught trombone, conducted several American orchestras and directed a number of festivals. He first worked with Arne Nordheim on a performance of The Hunting of the Snark for Norwegian television in October 1975. They subsequently explored and developed the musical and technical capacities of the trombone together, leading to the composing of The Return of the Snark, a dress rehearsal for which was held during a conference on contemporary music at Aspen Museum of Contemporary Art, with the work first performed during the Aspen Music Festival, to which Nordheim was invited as festival composer. Per Brevig ensured that Nordheim’s music was performed regularly by the ensembles that he led; recently, in October 2011, a concert at the Lincoln Center with the Grieg Festival Orchestra included a performance of Tenebrae. (jc)