Som när handen
represents Hansson’s first major choral work. Composed in 1993, it was awarded first prize in the national Swedish composition competition. Hansson approached the piece very much as a personal musical exercise, a working out of harmonic ideas. The resultant colourful harmonies are constructed with particular use of seconds and fourths. The harmonic language emerging from this piece permeates later works and establishes the composer’s distinctive musical voice. Annika Hultman Löfvendahl’s text begins at daybreak and Hansson uses middle C almost like the point on the horizon from where the breaking sun will appear. The sound quickly expands into an exultant C major. Following this, ‘A journey is begun’ with repetitions in all parts like deliberate footsteps. The use of such ostinatos is to become another fingerprint of the composer’s style. To conclude, Hansson recalls the opening ‘As when the day dawns’ with pianissimo unison Cs from all voices.
from notes by Rupert Gough © 2012