Following on from a reworking of the first movement of Beethoven’s “Moonlight” Sonata at the start of this month, Norwegian violinist Mari Samuelsen today releases another new single, a version of Una Mattina, the title composition of Ludovico Einaudi’s much-loved 2004 album. Especially arranged for solo violin, string orchestra and piano, this stirring interpretation was also captured on film during the recording session. “These have been some of the most remarkable months of my entire life,” says Mari Samuelsen.
“When we recorded these pieces towards the end of last year, I could never have predicted the times we’d be in when sharing them with everyone.” This new full-bodied arrangement of Einaudi’s original piece for solo piano allows Mari’s violin to soar to new heights, borne aloft by the composer’s poignant melody. “To me it’s always been very important to find the right balance between dark and light, stillness and energetic buzz,” Samuelsen explains. “When choosing one of Einaudi’s pieces, I wanted something that feels purifying and uplifting, and that makes me feel the light and energy of the sunrise. Una Mattina, in this new arrangement, brings me such joy, and I hope that people who listen to it are able to see the dawn, and feel a sense of hope as we embrace changes in our world and society.”
Mari’s interpretation of Einaudi’s work also maintains her tradition of reinterpreting familiar classics in an innovative fashion: her debut album, Mari, released in June 2019, features interpretations of works by composers as diverse as Johann Sebastian Bach, Philip Glass and Brian Eno.
Hailed as “a new kind of classical star” (Frankfurter Allgemeine Sonntagszeitung), Mari Samuelsen follows her own path, creating imaginative, unconventional programmes that speak to the Zeitgeist, performing them with a unique eloquence of expression. Her original approach to classical music has thrilled audiences not only at the world’s most prestigious venues – among them New York’s Carnegie Hall, the Hollywood Bowl, Paris’s Théâtre des Champs-Elysées and the Berlin Konzerthaus – but also in more unusual settings, including the Montreux Jazz Festival and Beijing’s Forbidden City. She has also collaborated on projects with artists such as Jeff Mills, Dubfire and Max Richter, whom she joined in February this year at London’s Barbican for the acclaimed world premiere of Voices, his latest large-scale work.
On 29 May, coinciding with the release of Una Mattina
, Mari and some of her closest musical friends will take part in an intimate, interactive concert
at Oslo’s Newtone Studios as part of Idagio Live’s Global Concert Hall series
. The programme will include music by Einaudi, Glass and Eno, and after the performance audience members will have access to a virtual Green Room where they will be able to speak directly with Mari herself.