Benjamin Staern (b. 1978) has established himself as one of the leading Scandinavian composers of the younger generation and the music is performed in Scandinavia, Europe, USA, Canada, Russia and Japan. Early musical experiences with studies in cello, piano and percussion in his youth. Studied musicology at Lund University and subsequently composition at the Malmö Academy of Music during 1998-2005 with professors Rolf Martinsson, Hans Gefors and Luca Francesconi.


Staern has a deeply personal style with an output including orchestral, chamber works, solo pieces, electroacoustic music and opera stages. An interesting aspect of his work as a composer is his unusual ability to associate tones and timbres with different colours and tints. This is a variant of a phenomenon called synaesthesia which is fundamental in his perception and the creation that reflects his sound world as well as in many of his work titles (Yellow Skies, Colour Wandering etc.) Following the success as ”composer in profile” of Båstad Chamber Music Festival 2016, the first opera The Snow Queen, based on a fairytale by H.C Andersen, was staged at the Malmö Opera in December 2016.  It was a huge success, with sold-out performances, and it received rave reviews. 


He was composer-in-residence with New European Ensemble 2010-14 on invitation from artistic leader and conductor Christian Karlsen that resulted into works like Tranströmersånger (selected poems from the Sad Gondola – collection by Nobel-prize author and poet Tomas Tranströmer), Bells and Waves (Chamber Symphony) winner of the SMFF Award 2011 in the category ”most important work in chamber music/smaller ensemble” and a multimedia work SAIYAH in collaboration with Yoko Seyama for large ensemble, electronics and scenografic light sculpture at Norrlandsoperan for the MADE-festival in Umeå during Cultural Capital of the Year 2014. Worried Souls (Clarinet Concerto) was awarded the Large Christ Johnson Prize (Stora Christ Johnson-priset) from the Royal Swedish Music Academy (Kungliga Musikaliska Akademien). Staern composed a chamber opera about HILMA: an opera about hidden art (libretto: Mira Bartov), that was performed at Modern Museum in Stockholm and at the Guggenheim Museum of Modern Art in New York.




Ung Nordisk Musik
Stockholm New Music
Sirenfestivalen, Göteborg
Nordic Music Days, Reykjavík & Helsinki
GAS-festivalen, Gothenburg
Båstad kammarmusikfestival
Malmö Chamber Music Festival
Njord Biennale, Copenhagen
Svensk Musikvår, Stockholm
Suntory Festival, Tokyo


MDR Sinfonieorchester Leipzig

Bamberger Symphoniker

Deutsche Kammerphilharmonie Bremen

Staatsorchester Rheinische Philharmonie

Duisburger Philharmoniker

Tokyo Symphony Orchestra

BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra

Iceland Symphony Orchestra

Helsinki Philharmonic

Kungliga Filharmonikerna

Swedish Wind Ensemble

Östgöta Blåsarsymfoniker

Swedish Radio Symphony Orchestra

Gothenburg Symphony Orchestra

Gävle Symphony Orchestra

Malmö Symphony Orchestra

Malmö Opera Orchestra

Jönköping Sinfonietta

Swedish Chamber Orchestra, Örebro


chamber ensembles

New European Ensemble
Norrbotten NEO
Ensemble Aspekte
Stockholm Chamber Brass
(a)muse ensemble


Håkan Hardenberger
Anna Larsson
Camilla Hoitenga
Johannes Möller
Karin Dornbusch
Carina Vinke
Hannah Holgersson
Jeroen Berwaerts
Filip Draglund
David Huang
Lauri Metsvahi
Jacob Kellermann
Daniel Migdal
Gitta-Maria Sjöberg
Philippe Cassard
Eke Simons
Lauma Skride


Sakari Oramo
Leif Segerstam
Daniel Raiskin
Marc Soustrot
Stefan Solyom
Tobias Ringborg
Jan Risberg
Golo Berg
Alexander Steinitz
Christian Karlsen
Petter Sundkvist
Nazanin Aghakhani
Cathrine Winnes
Mats Rondin
Emil Eliasson
Mika Eichenholz

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