Anne-Marie Ørbeck Smitt

She studied piano in Oslo and continued in Berlin (1930) with Sandra Drouker, Gustav Fredrik Lange, Mark Lothar and Paul Höffer for compositional training. Her Concertino for piano and orchestra was given in Berlin (1938), with the Großes Orchester des Deutschlandsfunks (“Large Orchestra of German Radio”), conducted by Hermann Stange for a radio broadcast. One year after her return from Berlin in 1939 she moved with her husband Helge Smitt from Oslo to Bergen and shifted her attention from performing to composing, with little opportunities to get her works performed in concert. “She was neither openly politically engaged, nor politically naive in private. Moreover, in terms of her compositional style, she was neither a fanatic classicist, nor a revolutionary modernist.” (Arnulf Mattes) Nevertheless, her song cycle Syv sanger til tekster av Hans Henrik Holm (“Seven Songs to the Words of Hans Henrik Holm”), dedicated to soprano Gunvor Mjelva, was awarded a second prize in the 1943 competition of the Norwegian Composers’ Association. Holm was an active member of the civil resistance movement, writing outspoken political poems under the pseudonym “ein uppdøl” and inspired several other composers, most prominently Ludvig Irgens Jensen.

 in Oslo
 in Bergen