Composer Karin Rehnqvist is the recipient of the 2022 Taube Award, an award given yearly by Vi magazine.

The award citation reads:

“In constant dialogue with the times, and frequently in interplay with words, her compositions create something bigger than text and music: an urgent here and now.”

The award is given for “singable poetry, or musical settings of poems,” as stipulated by Evert Taube, himself a frequent contributor to Vi magazine in the 1950s and 60s. The prize amount is 50,000 Swedish kronor (about 5,000 USD).

As a composer, Karin Rehnqvist has developed a unique sound that brings together modern art music with age-old folk traditions, in particular kulning, a form of herding call. Her best-known works include Hymn, commissioned for the wedding of Crown Princess Victoria of Sweden and Daniel Westling; Var inte rädd för mörkret (Do Not Fear the Darkness), a choral work; and Silent Earth, an oratorio about the climate crisis.

Her new opera Drifted (Strandad), with libretto by Kerstin Perski, will have its world premiere at the Royal Opera in Stockholm on November 19.


Of receiving an award in Taube’s name, Rehnqvist said:

– It made me extremely happy. It was unexpected to get an award from a different quarter than the usual ones for honoring composers. I’ve sung lots and lots of Taube, especially in choirs. I grew up with it, and singing Taube at home with friends is the best.

Evert Taube (1890–1976) was a Swedish writer, composer, troubadour, lutenist, screenwriter and artist.

His collected literary output ranks him as one of Sweden’s national bards. His rich body of work includes poetry and prose as well as drawings, watercolors, and oils. He is best-known, however, as the writer of more than 200 songs. His prose works include travelogues as well as novels.

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