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Rolf Lislevand

Language available : english
Although Rolf Lislevand established his credentials in the 20th century as a gifted and fairly traditional Baroque guitarist and lutenist, in the early 21st century, he has tended to avoid presenting the music he performs authentically, asserting that to reproduce the music the way it was originally heard, and intended to be heard, is not actually possible. He has thus attempted to give Baroque compositions a 21st century sound, often imparting a modern or even jazzy character to the music. He has typically performed both solo works and chamber/vocal works, the latter with his Ensemble Kapsberger. The instruments typically used by the group in concerts and on recordings have included harp and voice (Arianna Savall, daughter of Jordi Savall, filling both roles), nyckelharpa, and chitarra battente, a 12-string Baroque guitar. Lislevand has spent a considerable amount of his career as a member of Jordi Savall's Hespèrion XX (now Hespèrion XXI), La Capella Reial de Catalunya, and Le Concert des Nations, with whom he appeared in performances and on albums. Lislevand's numerous recordings can be found on a variety of labels, including ECM, Naïve, and Astree. Lislevand was born on December 30, 1961, in Oslo, Norway. He studied music and guitar at the Norway Academy of Music from 1980 until 1984. Further training came over the next three years at the prestigious Schola Cantorum Basiliensis in Basel, Switzerland, where he studied with lutenist Hopkinson Smith (a co-founder of Hespèrion XX) and Eugen Dombois. Lislevand had begun playing with Hespèrion XX by 1987, the year he relocated to Verona and began to study 17th century Italian music. Of the many recordings Lislevand made with Savall's groups, the 1993 Astree album España: Anthology of Spanish Music was among the more popular and critically acclaimed efforts. In 1993, Lislevand joined the faculty of the Staatliche Hochschule in Trossingen, Germany, a post he still held in 2021. In the late '90s, Lislevand founded the Ensemble Kapsberger, dedicating the ensemble to the music of the Italian Baroque: his son, gambist André Lislevand, has been a member of Ensemble Kapsberger since 2010. Rolf's 2006 album Nuove Musiche, on ECM, achieved great success, both with critics and the public. Because of its success and Lislevand's growing popularity in the U.S., he was invited to appear on the American broadcast network National Public Radio, where he elaborated eloquently on his still-controversial approach toward Baroque music performance. Lislevand continues to appear regularly both as a soloist and as chamber player with Ensemble Kapsberger. La Mascarade (2016) was his first solo recording for the ECM label. In 2020, Lislevand joined Philippe Pierlot, Lucile Boulanger, and Myriam Rignol on the Mirare album Monsieur de Sainte-Colombe et ses filles.
© Robert Cummings & Keith Finke /TiVo
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Discography

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