Danish conductor and composer; b. Copenhagen, Oct. 22, 1948. He studied at the Univ. of Copenhagen but was principally autodidact. He acquired a fine reputation as a conductor with his own vocal ensemble, Ars Nova, in Copenhagen. In 1990 he became a guest conductor of the BBC Singers in London. He has frequently led challenging concerts in which works from various eras and nations have appeared on the same program. As a composer, Holton has been particularly noted for his inventive counterpoint and melodic writing.
dramatic:The Bond, opera (1978–79); Maria Paradis, opera (Odense, March 6, 1999); film scores. ORCH.: Mahler-Impromptu (1972–73); Venetian Rhapsody for Chamber Orch. (1974); Caccia (1979); 2 syms.: No. 1 for Chorus and Orch. (1981–82) and No. 2, Snderjysk Sommer Symfoni for Soprano, Baritone, Chorus, and Orch. (1993); Sinfonia Concertante for Cello and Orch. (1985–86); Clarinet Concerto (1987); Plainsongs for Trumpet and Orch. (1989); Le jardin magique de Ravel (1991); Oboe Concerto (1992–93).CHAMBER: Cut for 6 Percussion (1980); Pillows and Fragments for 2 Trumpets, Horn, Trombone, and Tuba (1981); Czerny Goes Mad for 6 Percussion (1983); Ancher Erectum for 2 Percussion (1984); Sarabande à trois for Oboe, Cello, and Harpsichord (1984); Waltz Ache I for Vibraphone (1984); Chaconne for String Quartet (1987); La marcia alla follia for Flute, Violin, Viola, Cello, and Piano (1990).VOCAL: Little Kirstin at the Stake for Soprano and Chorus (1972); Pavane Fantasia for Soloists and Chorus (1974); Sonata for Soprano, Violin, and Cello (1976); Tallis Variations for Chorus and 9 Solo Strings (1976); La douce nuit for Chorus and Bells (1976); The Garden of Love for Tenor, Oboe, Clarinet, and String Quartet (1979); Wave and Cut for Chorus and 6 Percussion (1979); Lumbago for Chorus, Chamber Ensemble, and Synthesizer (1981); The Clod and the Pebble for 2 Choruses, 3 Clarinets, and Percussion (1982); The Flame and the Coal for Mezzo-soprano, Flute, Violin, Viola, Cello, and Piano (1983); 5 Motets for Chorus and Organ (1983); Imperia for Chorus and Orch. (1983); The Hours of Folly for Medium or High Voice, Flute, Clarinet, and String Quartet (1984); Tertia Die for Chorus and Orch. (1985); Waltz Ache II for Chorus and Vibraphone (1985); Pastell-Bilder for Medium Voice, Flute, Clarinet, Guitar, and Percussion (1985–86); Songs of Dusk for Soprano, Bassoon, and Orch. (1987); A Time for Everything for Chorus (1990); Rain and Rush and Rosy Bush for Chorus (1991); Night for Chorus (1992).
—Nicolas Slonimsky/Laura Kuhn/Dennis McIntire