Exit Music for Orchestra was composed by Bent Sørensen in 2006-07. Exit Music was commissioned by the Bergen International Festival for the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra, and is dedicated to Per Nørgård on the occasion of his 75th birthday.
It began with a dream, as it always does when I compose. I dreamt that I was standing in an open doorway on a hill in an otherwise open landscape. I do not know what was behind the door, but in front of it - towards the landscape - I "saw" my music disappearing. I stood looking for the music, and started to hear it, to remember it in time with its disappearance. The dream continued to recur as strange pictures in my daydreams, and I continued to try to write down the music that had vanished. It was also the dream that gave the piece its title- Exit Music.
Exit Music is based on three simple songs (the songs that vanish through the doorway): a little lullaby, which continues to reappear in fragments; a strange polyphonic pop song that refers to a section of my opera Under the Sky; and a passionate little love song, which concludes the piece on the strings, very quietly and in unison. These simple songs are then constantly overpainted by enervating repeated motes in fairly simple rhythms, which push the songs out of the room.