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In 1917, Nielsen was commissioned by Grosserer-Societetet (Chamber of Commerce) to compose a festive cantata to a text by Valdemar Rørdam. Details were laid down at a meeting in March 1917. Nielsen laid aside the composing of the piano work, Thema med variationer (CNW 87), while concentrating on the cantata, which had its first performance on 27 April 1917. The melody for the song Danmark i tusend Aar was re-used from the play, Shakespeare, which Nielsen had composed the previous year. See more about this work at The Royal Library