New Hope Suite – complete version – The composer playing

The composer playing

Thomas Åberg (b.1952) playing his own work New Hope Suite (2008-09) at the Allen organ of Engelbrektskyrkan, Stockholm. Recorded July 1, 2022.

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Sheet music edited by Carson Cooman and he writes the following about the piece:

New Hope Suite (2008–09) consists of three parts: New Hope, Three Meditations on New Hope, and New Hope Hymn. The suite was composed over nine months in 2008 and 2009 and was planned from the start as a large‐scale “triptych.”

It is also very possible to play any of the three individual parts as separate pieces in concert or in church. The second part (Three Meditations on New Hope) itself consists of three smaller movements, which can also be effectively performed as individual pieces.

New Hope Suite was a special work for Thomas Åberg, because it celebrated a particularly joyous period in his personal and creative life. After his early creative periods in the 1970s, 80s, and early 90s, the late 90s and early 2000s were more difficult years for many personal reasons. Iconic works of this darker period included the moody trilogy In the Garden and the powerful Waiting for Astor…, an evocation of a desire and attempt to “dance” amidst difficult times and a broken world. In purely musical terms, the late 90s and early 2000s also saw an exploration of elements of musical minimalism (Noon Sonata, Morning Sonata, Sunday Sonata, among others). Åberg sought to incorporate some minimalist influences into his work without losing the distinctive melodic and harmonic language that he had developed over the past decades.

New Hope Suite marked a return to a time of great happiness. The style of the music recalled the joy and extroversion that marked many of the Åberg’s works of the 80s, but now combined with influences from his period of minimalist exploration. The result is music of—in the composer’s own words—“overflowing joy.”

The initial inspiration for New Hope Suite came from the composer’s visits to and interest in the USA and especially reading about the restoration of the large Aeolian‐Skinner organ in the Cathedral of St. John the Divine in New York City. The first part of the suite was written specifically to honor of the completion of the cathedral organ’s renovation.

While the three parts have been published separately in the past, this publication marks the first complete edition of New Hope Suite and was prepared in collaboration with the composer.

Carson Cooman
March 2018
Cambridge, Massachusetts, US

Sheet music published by Svensk Musik – Swedish Music Information Centre


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