In Trondheim in Norway, where the chamber music festival this week is featuring the music of Australian composer Brett Dean. Stylish posters advertise the concerts around town, playing on the titles of works being performed in the festival, or on events associated with it. For example, this morning there’s a ‘Chamber Music Orienteering’ event where festival musicians will be playing at various outdoor locations around the city. Members of the public are given ‘orienteering instructions’, and there’s a prize for the person who manages to attend the largest number of performances. The poster says, ‘Chamber music is an orienteering course’.
My favourite poster uses the title of a Brett Dean composition, ‘Twelve Angry Men’, inspired by the Hollywood film of that name about a conscientious jury. In an inspired stroke Dean has tranposed the twelve angry men into a phalanx of cellists. The poster says (in Norwegian), ‘Chamber Music is Twelve Angry Men’.
On the side of my hotel is a huge version of this particular poster (see photo). Musicians see it every time they cross the bridge, and their comments are wry. Twelve angry men? ‘That would be three string quartets, then.’