The duo SecondChoice was formed during the 2020 pandemic when conducting concerts was temporarily terminated due to the global lock down. SecondChoice consists of Peter Ettrup Larsen on the clarinet and Martin Åkerwall on the piano.
Throughout their careers they have both distinguished themselves as both conductors, soloists and chamber musicians domestically as well as abroad.
As a duo they encompass both the traditional chamber concert format and the more engaging lecture concert approach.
The duo SecondChoice offers four different programs:
Experience SecondChoice in a program featuring classical masterpieces by e.g., Weber, Gade, Poulenc, Brahms and Debussy. You’ll go home with a feeling of having experienced music that has not just been deeply contemplated but which has also withstood the wear and tear of time.
Ping pong poulenc
A fresh take on the chamber concert format that invites the listener on a captivating journey to larger and smaller stars of the musical universe. Like a candy cone this program consists of a variety of shorter pieces and single movements that all hold a secret or tell a tale which is shared live in words and music by Larsen and Åkerwall.
The program includes music by Poulenc, Gade, Brahms and Åkerwall.
CONDUCTORS PERFORM MUSIC BY CONDUCTORS
Not often do conductors play in public. At the same time, composing conductors are not unheard of.
This program offers the opportunity to experience two conductors performing “conductor music” while explaining the correspondence between the role of composer and the role of conductor. This duality is simultaneously a yin yang symbiosis and an often troubled and forlorn love story in one and the same person; a duality which is rarely redemptive.
The program includes music by composing conductors such as Mahler, Bernstein, Furtwängler, Rachmaninoff, Ole Schmidt, Esa-Pekka Salonen and Åkerwall.
OUR PODIUM – A TOUR BEHIND THE FACADE OF TWO LIVES IN MUSIC
Larsen and Åkerwall present an entertaining concert lecture, where they in words, music and photos invite you on a tour through musical lives as both comrades, competitors and colleagues.
The trip begins among swings and carousels in 1976, when they both played in the Tivoli Boys Guard’s Band in Copenhagen. Soon they found themselves as fellow students at the fashionable Royal Danish Academy of Music. Subsequently the both got accepted at the prestigious Sibelius Academy in Finland, where they both studied with the renowned maestro Jorma Panula.
Over the years, they have both competed for the podium, but also shared it, e.g., on the highly popular TV-show “Maestro” and at a number of international conducting master classes.
This concert lecture not only offers great music, it also provides an honest peek into the ups and downs of the life as a conductor, composer and musician.
Peter Ettrup Larsen
Peter Ettrup Larsen graduated in conducting from The Sibelius Academy (1993) and later obtained a doctoral degree in symphonic conducting from the same institution (2015.) He also has a diploma (M.A.) in clarinet playing from The Royal Danish Academy of Music (1991) and a master’s degree in musicology and rhetoric from The University of Copenhagen (1994.)
Since 1998 Larsen has been the pianist with The Danish Radio Viennese Trio and since childhood with his brother, flautist Claus Ettrup Larsen in Ettrup Duo. As a clarinetist Larsen has performed in both classical contexts and jazz.
Larsen frequently appears on national, Danish media, e.g., the TV series “Maestro” where he led Danish actress Søs Egelind to victory in season one before becoming a judge in season two.
Larsen has previously taught chamber music at The Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen, and has been awarded The Gade Music Prize.
Martin Åkerwall has made a name for himself as both conductor, pianist and composer. He has received several prizes, e.g. The Noilly-Prat talent prize and The Gade Music Prize.
Following studies at The Royal Danish Academy of Music (percussion, piano and composition) he graduated in conducting from The Sibelius Academy in Helsinki, Finland.
His remarkable debut led to conducting positions with both theatres and orchestras in Germany, Switzerland, Finland, Singapore and the USA.
Simultaneously Åkerwall has appeared as both pianist, soloist and chamber musician at music festivals in Germany, France, Finland and Denmark where he for many years was also closely affiliated with The Royal Danish Ballet as both conductor and pianist.
Åkerwall has appeared several times on radio and TV and has, among other things, participated in "Maestro" as coach for Danish Minister of Culture Bertel Haarder and actress Brigitte Nielsen.