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Kurt Atterberg (12/12/1887 - 2/15/1974)

The Swedish composer Kurt Atterberg, an engineer by training, enjoyed a varied additional career, while rising to a leading position among contemporary Swedish composers. He served also as a conductor, critic and administrator, but these manifold activities did not prevent him writing a quantity of music of all kinds in a late Romantic style.

Stage Works

Atterberg wrote operas, ballets and incidental music. The second of these included The Foolish Virgins, written for the Swedish ballet in Paris. He wrote incidental music for Maeterlinck’s Sister Beatrice, Gozzi’s Turandot, Flecker’s Hassan and for a number of Shakespearean productions.

Orchestral Music

Atterberg left nine symphonies, many of them distinguishable by their titles, of which the last, the Sinfonia visionaria, is typical. There are concertos, overtures and symphonic poems, but one of his most popular works remains the Suite No. 3 for violin, viola and string orchestra, written in 1917.


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