Ever since 2007, Hallgrimskirkja Friends of the Arts Society has planned a special program for Reykjavik Cultural Night under the name Feast of Hymns. This year the Feast of Hymns is part of the Festival of Sacred Arts and therefore the programme is especially grand.
As usual, the six hour programme in Hallgrimskirkja features different choirs and organists and various religious music and every whole hour attending guests have a chance to join in singing the hymns. Every other year, at the very beginning of the programme, new Icelandic hymns have been premiered, some of them already having become standards in the churches of Iceland. Due to this year´s 100 year anniversary of women voting in Iceland, 10 women, composers and poets, were chosen to create five new hymns, premiered at the beginning of the programme at 15.00.
Among the performers this year are most welcome guests from King´s College in Cambridge, England; the choir King´s Men along with their conductor Stephen Cleobury, that for three decades has lead the world famous King´s College Choir. Among the choir members are two, young organists, that will be playing Hallgrimskirkja´s enormous organ. Also performing will be Icelandic choirs and organists, among them Hallgrimskirkja´s own choirs.
Artistic directors are Hordur Askelsson and Arngerdur Maria Arnadottir.
Hosting the event is Margret Boasdottir.
Feast of Hymns August 22nd 2015 – Programme
15.00 – Premiere of five new hymns by 10 Icelandic women, composers and poets.
The composers: Thora Marteinsdottir, Hildigunnur Runarsdottir, Bara Grimsdottir, Elin Gunnlaugsdottir and Soley Stefansdottir. The poets: Thordis Gisladottir, Idunn Steinsdottir, Kristin Omarsdottir, Gudrun Hannesdottir and Vilborg Dagbjartsdottir.
The Hallgrimskirkja Motet Choir sings, conductor is Hordur Askelsson.
15.30 – The Hallgrimskirkja Motet Choir sings, conductor is Hordur Askelsson.
16.00 – Join in the hymns – The Hallgrimskirkja Motet Choir and Hordur Askelsson lead the singing.
16.10 – King’s Men of Cambridge sing, conductor is Stephen Cleobury.
16.40 – Eythor A. Wechner plays the Klais-organ.
17.00 – Join in the Hymns – Lead by the Songsveitin Filharmonia choir.
17.10 – Songsveitin Filharmonia choir, conductor is Magnus Ragnarsson.
17.30 – Orlando Singers from the United Kingdom, conductor is David Everett.
18.00 – Join in the Hymns – Lead by the choir of Akranes parish church.
18.10 – The choir of Akranes parish church sings, conductor is Sveinn Arnar Saemundsson.
18.30 – An organist from King’s Men plays the organ.
19.00 – Join in the Hymns – Lead by the Reykjavik Cathedral Choir.
19.10 – The Reykjavik Cathedral Choir sings, conductor is Kari Thormar.
19.40 – Reykjavik Cathedral organist Kari Thormar plays the Klais-organ.
20.00 – King’s Men of Cambridge sing, conductor is Stephen Cleobury.
20.30 – Movie Music on the Klais organ. Organist Jonas Thorir plays movie themes.
21.00 – End of programme.