“I am not so much into researching music to compose music, I’m much rather researching life to compose music.”
Morgunblaðið August 5th, 2014
Having played for several years in the band Maus, Páll started studying at the Iceland Academy of the Arts in 2004. After finishing BA level in 2007, he entered Estonian Academy of Music and Theatre in Tallinn and graduated in 2009 as master of composition and in 2014 with a PhD. Páll studied composition with prof Helena Tulve and researched a 17th century Icelandic manuscript under the guidance of Urve Lippus, professor of musicology. Páll has had individual lessons from Arvo Pärt, Mirjam Tally and Erkki–Sven Tüür (Estonia), Tapio Tuomela (Finland), Lasse Thoresen (Norway) and James MacMillan (Scotland).
At Dark Music Days 2013, Una Sveinbjarnardóttir and Icelandic Symphony Orchestra premiered Páll's piece Nostalgia for violin and orchestra, conducted by Ilan Volkov. The piece was selected composition of the year at the Icelandic Music Awards. In beginning of 2014 Nostalgia was recorded by the Icelandic National Broadcast Service in collaboration with the Icelandic Symphony Orchestra. It was then conducted by Daníel Bjarnason.
In spring 2013 Páll had the opportunity to collaborate with Tallinn Chamber Orchestra on two occasions. Supremacy of Peace was commissioned and premiered at Estonian Music Days in Tallinn (conducted by Risto Joost) and From Shadow to Shadow at Estonian Composers Festival in Tartu. The latter piece has a solo part for soprano Tui Hirv, Páll's spouse and frequent performer of his music. Later in the same year SKARK String Ensemble performed Supremacy of Peace in Berlin, Reykjavík and Harpefoss, Norway.
At Dark Music Days 2014 Caput, the most established contemporary music ensemble in Iceland, had a recital with Páll's music.
Páll was composer in residence at Skálholt Summer Concerts 2014 where Hljómeyki choir premiered Páll’s Song of Songs for soprano, baritone and mixed choir along with some of his older vocal works.