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May 26 the Danish guitar sextet Cirklen will release its debut album Genklang (Danish for resonance). Genklang is a collaboration between Cirklen and the Danish choir ensemble MidtVest Girls' Choir, composed for the unusual constellation of six acoustic guitars and classical choir.

After having been performed in several Danish churches,
Genklang will now be released in a recorded version – recorded in Herning Valgmenighedskirke and in KoncertKirken at Blågaards Plads in Copenhagen.

Despite having been active since 2009 with a variety of pieces, collaborations and concert formats (spanning techno, sound art and contemporary dance) Genklang is Cirklen’s first official release.

The album has been preceded by singles “Stokke Strum” and “Falls-Rolls” – which received airplay on Danish national radio.


"Genklang" will be released digitally on all major streaming services and on vinyl with handmade linoleum print covers by Danish artist Pernille Gjørup Bruhn.

Listen to the album and read more below.

Genklang is intended as an acoustic portrait of the church architecture and by letting the music move choreographically and reach the listener from several directions we want to give the audience a new sonic experience of this familiar space.

Although none of us actively practices Christianity, we still see the church as a sacred space. For millennia it has been used as a place of worship, contemplation and devotion to something greater than oneself and this devotion in particular is something we cultivate very consciously in our music.


In 2020 Vestervig Church commissioned a piece from composers Niels Bjerg and Anders Holst and their guitar ensemble Cirklen. In collaboration with MidtVest Girls' Choir, they delivered the piece “Genklang” (Danish for Resonance).

“Genklang” is an attempt to provide a sonic imprint of the traditional protestant church architecture of Denmark. During several passages of the concert performances, the six guitar players and the choir move around the church along carefully choreographed routes. In this way, the audience is enveloped in a kind of acoustic surround sound that does not rely on electrical amplification, but solely on the interplay between the performing bodies and the architecture of the church. These choreographies are also performed in parts of the recordings, which helps to convey the particularity of the church space. In Bjerg and Holst's words:


The direct imprint of the performers’ movements in the church space makes the architecture itself an active participant in the creation of the piece. The voices that rise, the bodies that move through the structure and the reverberations of the acoustic guitars in the vaults. It is the imprint of the body on the architecture, but just as much it is the imprint of the architecture on the body and the listener will be drapped in a wealth of overtones from the choir and the crystalline notes of the guitars.

In “Genklang” the ensemble enters into a dialogue with the church space and all the associations it carries:


The relationship between individual and community is at the heart of “Genklang”. Historically, the Protestant church has had to provide a framework for the individual's encounter with the metaphysical as well as act as a kind of communal space. The church space has as such always existed at the intersection between intimate contemplation and the organization of the community – a duality reflected in Genklang's compositions, which unfold in a field of tension between the fragility of the individual and the complexity of the community – a constant flickering between harmony and dissonance, between solitary notes and majestic harmony.





“Genklang” operates in one of Western culture’s most recognizable and iconic soundscapes. The acoustics of the church space no longer belongs only to religious architecture, but has come to act as a kind of placeholder for the exalted, sacred and liturgical in music, films and television. The familiar long reverb has become a shortcut to indicating sincerity – a world after God using the resonance of the church as an empty signifier of the metaphysical. “Genklang” approaches this resonance from a new and unexpected angle. Rather than cultivating a hollow post-metaphysical reference, “Genklang” revitalizes the acoustics of the church architecture through a playful and open meditative state. By flinging new patterns into the church space, its resonance is invested with new meaning, sincerity and intensity.

The vastness of the church space can make people feel small. By alternating between quiet, intimate acoustic sounds – where the musicians and singers get so close as to almost whisper in the ear of the individual audience members – and the sound of the ensemble overflowing the space, the contrast between the individual human being and the vast universal space is explored.


“Genklang” was commissioned by Vestervig Kirke and supported by Statens Kunstfond, William Demant Fonden, Augustinus Fonden, Knud Højgaards Fond, Ringkøbing-Skjern Kommune, Dansk Komponistforening, Dansk Korforbund, Dansk Kapelmesterforening and KODA.

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