thumbHTJ photo Wilfred Gachau

Hanne Tofte Jespersen
member of Danish Composers' Society, Danish Musicians Union &
IAWM (international alliance for women in music)

VIDEO (Vimeo)
LIST OF WORKS pdf - will open in new window
CVpdf - will open in new window

I like to bridge performers and audiences. My own background is a broad one, I have roots in both classical European music, choir traditions, folk tones as well as world music, the latter after years of stay and work in West Africa.


As an artist I'm dedicated to making the invisible audible and to the creation of interactive & collaborate works.
I explore the outer and the inner world with my voice. Motives emerge through intuitive singing, and I quickly write them down as they are my key material to composing.



My music works are rooted in both European classical music, folk tones and traditional music. Some of my works have an underlying narrative. In other cases I have worked abstractly on basis of occurring motives. I also find it inspiring to compose for projects where children and youth meet and perform with professional musicians. Read more



thumbIn this project I set urban and rural landscapes to music. In 2014-17 in 8 areas of Roskilde District.

latest project: May-June '17




thumbTHE ETRURIA-SUITE from 2016 is a 20 minutes piece for violin og double bass in 9 short movements. The work has an underlying tale inspired by the Pyrgi tablets, an Etruscan artefact dedicated the goddess Uni Astri/ Astarte/ Ishtar.
LISTEN TO its 1.movement 'OPENING HOUR'
with Karen Humle, vl, & Ida Bach Jensen, db.
The Suite was completed during OPEN-MUSIC-WORK-PLACES
at The Museum of Contemporary Art
where I was engaged as a composer in November 16.
In December the music was 1st performed at Vendsyssel Art Museum at a concert featuring composers and musicians who introduced the new works from two workshop projects in 2016, and audience was engaged in open dialogue on the new pieces.

Latest performance was during Ribe Cultural night Oct 2018.AUDIO



Click on images to see actual size.
Click on links to listen to the music.

Image- and audio files will open in seperate windows. Enjoy!



22-23 Nov 2021: Danish 1. performances


thumbContemporary music for fascinating historical string and wind instruments - performed by these most wonderful musicians:
Andreas Arend - theorbo, Heidi Gröger - viola da gamba, Emmanuelle Bernard - baroque violin, Núria Sanromà Gabàs - cornetto (zink).

I wrote "FINDING CONSORTS" for LÜBECKER LAUTEN LUST 2019. We were 2 Danish and 2 German composers, each commissioned to write a 15 min. piece, premiered in Lübeck (DE) .
Now Andreas Arend's group will perform it in Denmark during festival TIDLØS / TIMELESS in Copenhagen and Roskilde, and also do a studio recording.

VIDEO from Lübeck


for Nordic String Quartet will be recorded for CD in 2022.

broadcasted the premiere



I have composed this string quartet for the context of Haydn's Opus 76,2 (1797-98) and Britten's String Quartet No 1 (1941) - read more..
photos from
© Ida Bach Jensen

Nordic Music Days

1-4 September 2021
at the Faroe Islands!
thumb SINFONIAETTAWith 3 weeks residency, artist talk, workshops with Faroese students and performance of this work for singers and sinfonietta 3 Sept. as part of the festival programme


New piece for solo violin:
"FANTASIA in view of J.S.Bach"
next performance Dec 4, 2021

Commissioned by violinist Kuno Kjærbye for his concert project with Bach's 6 solo sonatas/partiten and works for solo violin commissioned from three Danish composers.
The project was presented just before the break out of the pandemia... view:

This 12 min solo piece is
"A violin tale in which appears prayor to an angel",
composed for the context of Bach's C major Sonata and the
E major Partita for solo violin, and also inspirered by Helga Thoene's research of 'hidden chorals' in Bach's sonatas for solo violin. Dates and venues


My new string quartet:
thumb_NSQrehearsalThe context is music created in times of unrest and war threats on the European continent. The title of the project became almost prophetic...:
The historical context is Haydn back in Vienna after his stays in London, then in the shadow of Napoleon rearming France; Britten at the beginning of the 2. world war had emigrated to US where the 1st performance took place, but decided to return to England.
On his journey crossing the Atlantic Ocean he rewrote his shining "Hymn to St Cecilia" to W.H. Auden's beautiful tribute to the guardian spirit of music.
thumb 1stVlHaydn-Britten and the present times, incl. the current pandemia have formed my inner resonating sound board when composing this quartet. In its 2.movement I have incorporated motifs from the 2nd mov. of Haydn's Opus 76,2. At the beginning and towards the end of the whole piece a certain harmonic structure brings an Hommage à Britten's choir work.




BRAGE in Randers commissioned this work in collaboration with Roskilde, Ribe, Lyngby-Taarbæk, Furesø chamber music societies. Together with Nordic String Quartet we developed this programme. Dates and venues
The project is sponsored by Augustinus Foundation,
William Demant Foundation, The Danish Arts Foundation,
Danish Composers Society / KODA Culture.

'VIBRANDRING' 2019 in Esbjerg-Varde:

The title of this innovative project is derived from the Danish words for vibrance, memory/erindring & wandering/vandring.


thumk kickoff











VIDEO Sept '19


thumb 5aprVIBRANDING 2018/19 produced by Esbjerg Ensemble is an
18 min. collaborate work for professional sinfonietta ensemble plus youth talents.


Vision: To add vibrance to a quarter of the town by creating a music work for it, basing it on walking the area in common. The Rørkjær quarter in Esbjerg was chosen by the local participants.


thumbTalented 7th formers wrote texts based on their walking the same route. The signature music of the piece has lyrics by Icelandic author Einar Már Gudmundsson.


thumb 5apr2
















thumb allVIBRANDRING was
1st performed 5-6.april by Esbjerg Ensemble's
10 musicians together with 15 talented young singers and instrumentalists from Esbjerg and Varde Music Schools who have been part of the creative process. The youth talents played instruments which are also in the professional ensemble
Conductor Arne Balk Møller.

Danish Arts Foundations and Vadehavspuljen.

Kick off workshop and artist talk with composer
September 2018, composition Oct-Dec,
rehearsals Jan-Mar 2019,
performances 5-6 April


GITTA-MARIA SJÖBERG & POLINA FRADKINA have recorded my new song cycle 'På Gjennomreise - Three songs for soprano & piano for poems by Marit Tusvik'.


The upcoming album will hold my songs together with Matti Borg's Cinq poèmes du Prince Concort Henrik, and Musorgskij's cycle 'The Nursery'.
Release on Micropascal 2019; produced by Torsten Jessen.

The DUO as well as the Norwegian author Marit Tusvik are inspiring artistic collaborations for me.
In the songs I have reached out for the poems' clear horizon of lived human experience to make it audible in corresponding transparency. The Danish Arts Foundation granted composer's fee for this commission, thanks to Roskilde Music Association and their 50 years anniversary celebrations.



Splintered Happiness'

- the of this commissioned work which I composed in 2017 for the
ensemble's new outreach project
'THE GARDEN - 3 Tales'
in collaboration with Fuglsang Art Museum,
Museum Lolland-Falster and Kulturtjenesten.
I created the music as
'audio images' (to be performed live) on the garden / park of Fuglsang Manor House
and some common figures whose lives were
connected with the garden - in no. 7 it is
a young servant maid whose happiness is broken.


thumb ensemble






These eight HØREBILLEDER /Audio images
(30 min for fl,cl,bs,hp,p, vl,vla,vcl) now form the concert of the project and bridges a historical insight into 'Fuglsang of the past' on the one hand, and a visual art workshop on the other.


the 2nd Audio Image



thumb Kuno
duo for violin and organ which
Kuno Kjærbye and Erik Hildebrandt-Nielsen
first performed April 2017 at
Gottorf Castle Chapel in Schleswig (DE).

I composed two commissioned duos for solo violin & organ for GOTTORFER MUSIK IM LUTHERJAHR

'Gottorfer Tongewebe' ('tone web/ tone weaving'), and 'Hommage à Nicolaus Bruhns'. Gottorf Castle Chapel has remained untouched with its wonderful acoustics since the 16th century, and the organ is restored to what it orginally was. So 'Gottorfer Tongwebe' is inspired by the chance of bringing these unique sounds of the past into the present. During the creative process I had the opportunity to spend two days of writing by the historical organ in the very chapel. thumb
The duo Kjærbye & Hildebrandt-Nielsen commissioned these pieces for their new programme in which they juxtapose new works with North German baroque music for both to shed light on one another.




was toured in Iceland 2014.
Stefan Parkman conducted the performances
during Skálholt Summer Concerts
with Music for the Mysteries,
South Iceland Chamber Choir and
actor María Ellingsen as storyteller.


- to info, audio, reviews on the Melangell work..


My work for male choir reached the final in
Linköping Student Singers' Composition Award 2016.

The choir recorded it in 2017, and in spring 2018 it has been released on their new album at Spotify.
'Going to Heaven' for TTBBB is to a poem by Emily Dickinson.






My collaborate project

has been on since 2014.

If the land could talk, it would have a lot to tell...

so I decided to set its silent speech to music together with 4-5 yr old children. We walk and sing the land of their local landscape, I compose based on the walks.


By June 2017 in all 48 kindergardens / 1200 children have taken part.
I have done 320 walks with children and composed
8 music works, each 25 min,
with in all 41 songs and 31 interludes scored for choreographed childrens voices & professional instrumentalists in varying trio combinations.
sponsors: Roskilde District, Danish Arts Foundation, Danish Musicians Union

to video, music, photos, visual art

to summary in English:
scroll down Frankenstein's Lab at Dome of Visions 30 Nov 2015
to find summary of my presentation during that event.






This interactive music tale of mine


has been performed/produced by:


in two series of school- & family concerts in 16/17, featuring me in the role of story teller -
cf press coverage with video.


Glostrup music school has produced it
in all the district's primary schools
in Oct 2017 and in April-May 2019.


- DR festival

for children in 2013.
Here my tale was 1st performed after
being among the winners in their competition:



in DR Concert House Studio 4:


foto foto

1st performance with Anna Klett, clarinet - Anrijs Ivanovskis, bassoon - Vera Panitch, violin - David Hildebrandt, perc, Hanne Tofte Jespersen, storyteller.

Danish Composers Association and DR-Musikariet (Radio Denmark) launched a competition in 2012 aiming at new music tales for children in which children would play an active tole in the storyline.
My proposal "Farvespillet / The Play of Colours" were among the winners.

LISTEN to extracts: BLUE (mp3; dur 4:25) or 10 min sample with interaction (mp3; dur 10:03)

fotoA 40 minutes interactive music tale for 5-8 year old children in which each instrument represents a colour and a character.
THE PLAY OF COLOURS is scored for violin, clarinet, bassoon, percussion*, storyteller and children's audience.

*) marimba, bongos, congas, temple blocks, triangle, chime, cymbal.

"THE PERCUSSION is a BLACK & WHITE jack of all trades who initiates the play. It consists of 4 dances:
The BASSOON has a RED dance full of funny movements, and you are the dancer. The CLARINET loves her YELLOW dance and would greatly prefer to enjoy it with her friend, the violin. The VIOLIN, though, so fast and full of ideas changes the yellow dance, and the clarinet gets angry and does not want to play the BLUE dance of the violin..... Thus the players need the children's help to get the clarinet back into the game so that all may reach the GREEN dance, for you to finally paint it all on the card of the play

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link to CV


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