Hugi Guðmundsson

Ari Magg
Composer Hugi Guðmundsson is nominated for the 2024 Nordic Council Music Prize for the oratorio “The Gospel of Mary” (2022).


Hugi Guðmundsson (born in 1977) earned a master’s degree in 2005 from the Royal Danish Academy of Music in Copenhagen. Guðmundsson’s music ranges from solo works to orchestral pieces, but he is best known for his choral music, which is widely performed around the world and has become part of the standard repertoire of many Icelandic choirs.  


In recent years, his focus has increasingly been geared towards larger works, including concertos, orchestral works, operas, and oratorios. 


The world premiere of Guðmundsson’s oratorio, The Gospel of Mary, took place in 2022 at the Reykjavik Arts Festival. The work brings to life a long-forgotten gospel that challenges the established narrative surrounding the role of Mary Magdalene.  


The libretto was compiled by Nila Parly and Niels Brunse and combines texts from the gospel with early female theologians and original choral verses. It portrays Mary as an apostle of equal importance to her male counterparts, inviting us to listen to a voice that was silenced by history.  


It’s a story of female oppression and patriarchy, an important one to be told.