In First Snow, the women’s Voices programmatically mimic the falling, layering motion of fresh snow, joined by the men whose Voices recall the hardship of the winter to come. In Hermit Peak, one SATB Chorus moves in hymn-like progression, while the other SATB Chorus musically skips about, suggesting the fleeting energies of living things and of weather.
Contemporary Danish composer and conductor Bo Holten is the founder of the Danish Vocal groups Ars Nova and Musica Ficta and he has written extensively for Voices as well as producing concerti, symphonies, oper, chamber music and film scores.
First Snow and Hermit Peak set poetry of the 19th century Icelandic poet Stephan G Stephansson, who emigrated to western Canada. His words describe the beauty and struggle of the immigrant experience there.