Artist Led, Creatively Driven

Pablo Ortiz: Gallos y Huesos, Notker

Ars Nova Copenhagen
Paul Hillier – Conductor

Release Date: 1 June 2015


PABLO ORTIZ (1956 – )


1 Gallos y Huesos (Si cuando cae la noche…)

2 Gallos (Quien ha visto la espalda…)

3 Huesos (Quien cada día…)

4 Gallos (Nadie era capaz de imaginar…)

5 Huesos (Quien ha visto el cogote…)

6 Gallos (El vacìo del plato…)

7 Huesos (Alguien que sostiene el borde…)

8 Gallos (El gallo es de esos animales…)

9 Huesos (Sin embargo…)

10 Gallos (Cuando se tiene la carne…)

11 Huesos (A veces, cuando el gallo…)

12 Gallos (Antes de cerrar los ojos…)

13 Huesos (Años de acumular en la pileta…)

14 Gallos (Hace falta una lengua…)

15 Huesos (Quien se detenga en la cocina…)

16 Gallos (Pero a la larga…)

17 Huesos (El animal se ha ido…)

18 Gallos (Cuando se mira al gallo…)

19 Huesos (Quien ha visto la neblina…)

20 Gallos (Si alguien llega…)

21 Huesos (Uno piensa frente a la pileta…)



22 I Organ solo 0:54

23 II In Nomine Domini 0:45

24 III Congaudent angelorum (duet) 2:04

25 IV Organ solo 0:43

26 V Quos versiculos 1:34

27 VI Singulae motus (duet) 1:25

28 VII Organ solo 0:41

29 VIII Iste libellus (bass solo) 1:00

30 IX Cum adhuc iuvenulus (quartet) 1:53

31 X Quid tu virgo 1:30

32 XI Organ solo 0:32

33 XII Clare sanctorum 1:07

34 XIII Organ solo 0:46

35 XIV Haec igitur 2:57

36 XV Organ solo 2:02


Total time 71:36



Else Torp (solo 3, 9, 17)
Signe Asmussen (solo 15, 19)
Hanna Kappelin

Ellen Marie Brink Christensen
Sine Tofte Hannibal

Jakob Soelberg (solo 6, 11, 13, 16)

Tine Rehling


Tenor 1
Miles Lallement (solo 24)
Tomas Medici

Tenor 2
Chris Watson (solo 24, 27)
Christian Damsgaard

Bass 1
Asger Lynge Petersen
Jakob Soelberg

Bass 2
Thomas Kiørbye
Jakob Bloch Jespersen (solo 27, 29)

Christopher Bowers-Broadbent

Paul Hillier


Pablo Ortiz was born in Argentina in 1956. His mother was an amateur pianist, and she instilled in him a deep appreciation for the 19th-century romantic canon at an early age. In subsequent years he developed a crazy love for early music and tango, this time on his own. He has lived in the US for the last three decades. Vocal works represent a considerable part of his output, but he has also written orchestral, chamber and electroacoustic music, as well as music for films and music for the theatre. His work has been recognized with commissions from the Guggenheim, Koussevitzky, Gerbode, Fromm and Terezin foundations. In 2008 he received an Academy Award from the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He is now working on a collection of songs setting Thomas Hardy’s poems from the turn of the century, interspersed with appropriately anachronistic tango interludes. His long and fruitful interaction with Paul Hillier could be described, in the words of Jorge Luis Borges, as “one of those ‘English’ friendships that begin by excluding confidences and very soon dispense with dialogue”.


The poems that constitute Gallos y Huesos are by the Argentinean writer Sergio Chejfec, who was born in Buenos Aires in 1956. From 1990 to 2005 he lived in Venezuela, where he published Nueva Sociedad, a journal of politics, culture and the social sciences. He currently lives in New York City and teaches in the Creative Writing programme in Spanish at New York University. He is the author of several novels, essays and a book of poetry. The novels usually feature a slow-paced narration that interweaves a minimal plot with reflection. Memory, political violence, and Jewish-Argentine culture and history are some of the recurring themes in his work. His books have been translated into French, German, Portuguese, and English (the latter published by Open Letter Books).

Gallos y Huesos was published in Buenos Aires in 2003. The poet writes: “The scene that the poems describe is marked by repetition: the meal in solitude, chewing the meat and gnawing the bones, to leave the bones in the sink in the kitchen, and permanent allusions to the physical and moral virtues of fighting roosters, and to the scenery and ambiance of the pits, obviously death. One of the points into which the poems delve is the morphology of the rooster. Do they have a back? What is neck and what is head? The text suggests that it has arms and not wings. The poems are organized as variations on leitmotifs.”

And the composer adds: “The almost obsessive, repetitive quality of the poems makes me think of the different shades of grey in a barely lighted kitchen, when one stumbles into it in the middle of the night to drink a glass of water. In the music, areas of increased luminescence marked by the precise attacks of the harp or the high voices alternate with darker, less defined zones. Still, the boundaries between them remain somewhat vague throughout the piece.”


“I came across the texts in Notker thanks to Paul Hillier, who showed them to me in 1994. I was fascinated by the clarity with which Notker the Stammerer teaches ways to remember ‘extremely long melodies’, and the candid description that he offers of himself as a ‘toothless man of stammering speech’ when he talks about his own accomplishments. Coming from someone who died in 912, Notker’s comment was unexpectedly modern: I had the feeling that we could have been friends. I chose to set texts from the Prologue to the Sequences (In nomine Domini, incipit liber ymnorum Notkeri), from ‘The Life of Charlemagne’ (especially various kinds of musical references and instructions) and quotations from some of Notker’s own sequences (Virgo plorans, Qui to Virgo & Clare sanctorum). Finally, I wrote some organ solos to frame the vocal sections. The piece was written for and is dedicated to the Theatre of Voices and Paul Hillier.”

© Pablo Ortiz 2015

The Grammy Award-winning vocal ensemble Ars Nova Copenhagen is widely recognized as one of the finest vocal groups in Europe. Founded in 1979, today the ensemble is busier than ever, with an annual season of concerts in Copenhagen and throughout Denmark, and frequent tours across Europe, the Americas and Asia. At the heart of Ars Nova Copenhagen’s work is its equal dedication to early music and new music. Their extensive recording catalogue includes two CDs devoted to John Taverner and his Tudor contemporaries; Terry Riley’s ‘60s masterpiece ‘In C’ in a version for voices and percussion; and The ‘Christmas Story’ told through plainchant, motets and traditional folk carols. There are also many recordings focused on the music of Denmark’s most important living composers, such as Pelle Gudmundsen-Holmgreen, Per Nørgård, Ib Nørholm and Bent Sørensen. In 2010 they received a Grammy for their CD of music by David Lang (Harmonia Mundi USA), and in 2011 completed a series of 4 CDs of the complete narrative works of Heinrich Schütz (Dacapo Records). Their most recent recording is ‘The Golden Age of Danish Partsongs.’

Tine Rehling graduated in 1989 from the Royal Danish Academy of Music . From 1989 to 1991 she had further studies with distinguished Professor, Susann McDonald at Indiana University, USA. From 1998 to 2001 Tine Rehling held the position of Principal Harpist at the Aalborg Symphony Orchestra, Denmark. She has since focused on her solo and chamber music career, performing as a soloist with most Danish symphony orchestras and touring throughout Europe, Turkey, USA, Brazil, China and Australia. She is continuously working to expand the repertoire for harp, in collaboration with a number of Danish composers. Tine Rehling has also recorded a number of CDs as a soloist and chamber musician, including a recording of Per Nørgård’s music for harp (DaCapo, 2006).

Christopher Bowers-Broadbent is an organist and composer whose career has taken him far and wide. His earliest musical education was as a Chorister in the Choir of King‘s College, Cambridge. He later studied both organ and composition at London’s Royal Academy of Music, where he subsequently became Professor of Organ, from 1973 to 1992, and later Fellow. His many recordings can be heard on ECM and Harmonia Mundi USA. He was appointed Organist and Choirmaster of Gray’s Inn in 1983 (and Fellow in 2012), and is also Director of Music at the West London Synagogue, where he has held the post of Organist, with rare ecumenical aplomb, since 1973. He also continues to compose prolifically, most recently in the field of opera.

Paul Hillier was founding director of the Hilliard Ensemble and Theatre of Voices. Currently he is chief conductor of Ars Nova Copenhagen, Chamber Choir Ireland, and the Coro Casa da Musica (Porto). In 2006 he was awarded an OBE for services to choral music. In 2007 he received the Order of the White Star of Estonia, and was awarded a Grammy for Best Choral Recording (with the Estonian Philharmonic Chamber Choir). In 2010 he was awarded his second Grammy – for best new music recording (with Theatre of Voices). In 2013 he was awarded the Order of Dannebrog (the Danish knighthood). He has taught in the USA at the University of California campuses of Santa Cruz and Davis, and from 1996 to 2003 was Director of the Early Music Institute at Indiana University, Bloomington. His books about Arvo Pärt and Steve Reich are published by Oxford University Press.

“…they have a mystical, timeless quality which makes the complex music very accessible.”(Artistxite)

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