Thorwald Jørgensen

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Thorwald Jørgensen
Thorwald Jørgensen, theremin.png
Background information
BornZaltbommel, Netherlands
GenresClassical, Electronic

Thorwald Jørgensen (born 1980, Zaltbommel)[1] is a Dutch classical musician who specialises in the theremin, an electronic musical instrument.


Jørgensen took up playing percussion instruments at age 14 and began playing in orchestras. He took up classical music as a career full-time after graduating from the Utrecht and Tilburg Conservatory. He became influenced by the theremin after hearing the work of Clara Rockmore and began researching the instrument's history and teaching himself how to play one.[2] As well as watching old videos of Rockmore, he consulted a friend who played the cello for musical advice.[3] He learned Rachmaninoff's "Vocalise," which has become one of his favourite pieces.[2] He has subsequently played over 100 concerts using the theremin, including in Saint Petersburg and a tour of the United States.[4] In 2014, Jørgensen performed at the Music and Beyond festival in Ottawa, performing Daniel Mehdizadeh's "The Awakening of Baron Samedi".[5] Together with Dutch harp player Renske de Leuw, Thorwald premiered "Sirenum scopuli" by Canadian composer Victor Herbiet at the X Rio Harp Festival in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil in 2015.[6]

Jørgensen has been described as "one of the most important exponents of classical music on the theremin".[7] In interviews, he has said he considers the theremin capable of being a serious instrument, rather than the novelty it is normally perceived as. He believes he can reproduce all the sounds in a typical classical string section from double bass to violin.[3] In concert, usually after a performance of "Vocalise", he likes to explain the operation of the instrument to the audience, saying the performance "should be about the music and not about me playing in the air".[2] He has assembled a library of theremin music from stock libraries in both the Netherlands and worldwide, and has lectured on composition at the Conservatory of Amsterdam and Rotterdam Conservatory.[8]

Outside of classical music, Jørgensen has also played theremin on the Dutch progressive metal band Satinoxide's album "Still in the Sun".[9]


  1. ^ Bas Moerman, Bommelse thereminist speelt in eigen stad, 10 May 2016.
  2. ^ a b c Mclennan, Pam (8 July 2014). "Thorwald Jørgensen: Good Vibrations Make the Music (+Video)". Epoch Times. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  3. ^ a b "Theremin no novelty act, player says". Ottawa Citizen. 4 July 2014. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  4. ^ "Voor ieder wat wils bij concerten van Dordrechts Philharmonisch orkest" (in Dutch). Alles over Dordrecht. 1 October 2013. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  5. ^ "Music and Beyond puts contemporary music on the stage". Ottawa Citizen. 10 July 2014. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  6. ^ "No Rio, tudo é mais relaxado". O Globo (in Portuguese). 1 June 2015. Retrieved 8 June 2015.
  7. ^ "El instrumento que no se toca tiene su propio festival en GAM" (in Spanish). Diario Uchile. 6 November 2014. Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  8. ^ "Thorwald Jørgensen - bio". Thorwald Jørgensen (Official Website). Retrieved 2 April 2015.
  9. ^ "Satinoxide verweeft metal in prikkelende variaties". PZC (in Dutch). 11 August 2011. Retrieved 2 April 2015.

External links[edit]