Norwegian extravaganza at London Jazz Festival

 Date:14/11/2008 - 22/11/2008
 Location:England, London

Kings Place is now hosting a special eight day celebration of Norwegian music, film, theatre, literature and dance entitled 'Scene Norway', a mini festival within the London Jazz Festival.

From November 14th-22nd, Kings Place, the iconic new creative centre in Kings Cross, will be hosting a special eight day celebration of Norwegian music, film, theatre, literature and dance curated by Fiona Talkington. Scene Norway presents a mini festival within the capital wide London Jazz Festival in association with BBC Radio 3, encompassing a specially imported version of Kristiansand’s Punkt Festival.

Scene Norway expands on the high profile enjoyed by Norwegian jazz over the past eight years, drawing in literature, theatre and film to present some of Norway’s most creative figures. The event opens with the world premiere of new commissions by UK saxophonist and composer Iain Ballamy and Norwegian electronics artist Jan Bang. The new works have been written for the evocative sound of Arve Henriksen - who plays trumpet with a breathy quality reminiscent of the Japanese shakuhachi flute and vocalises with an ethereal beauty – together with players from London Sinfonietta. This BBC Radio 3 commission for Iain Ballamy rekindles a relationship between Arve and the orchestra from two years ago and highlights the warm cultural ties between the UK and Norway.

Scene Norway’s programme brings together musicians including Samí singer Mari Boine, Morten Qvenild, Bugge Wesseltoft, Karl Seglem and Terje Isungset, with a selection of writers including Kjell Ola Dahl, Merete Morken Andersen and Tore Renberg - who is celebrated in the anthology produced by Stavanger as European Capital of Culture in 2008 - and a weekend programme of cultural activity for the whole family, offer UK audiences a snap shot of Norway’s arts scene. These are artists who capture the special spirit of Norway, drawing on ancient traditions and an awe-inspiring landscape to inform work that is both contemporary and timeless.

Don't miss Punkt!
Scene Norway culminates in a three day focus on the exciting Norwegian festival, Punkt. Set in the harbour town of Kristiansand in late summer, Punkt was founded in 2004 by sampling wizards Jan Bang and Erik Honoré. It takes the idea of live remixing to a new level, occupying two spaces in Kings Place to create back-to-back concerts which audiences can move between. In the live room, musicians including Nils Petter Molvær, Sidsel Endresen and Eivind Aarset combine in various formations to create stunning sonic landscapes. For the full Punkt programme, see below - to buy tickets, click here.

Thursday 20 Nov:
Hall One (7.30pm - 8.15pm) - Performance: Arve Henriksen, trumpet + Jan Bang, electronics + Morten Qvineld, piano/keyboard, Erik Honoré, electronics + Eivind Aarset, guitar
Hall Two (8.15pm - 9pm) - Remix:Tim Elsenburg, voice
Hall One (9.30pm - 10.15pm) - Performance: Eivind Aarset Trio with Håkon Kornstad (Eivind Aarset, guitar, Wetle Holte, drums, Audun Erlien, bass, Håkon Kornstad, saxophone) 
Hall Two (10.15 - 11pm) - Remix: Sidsel Endresen, voice + Erik Honoré, electronics and Jan Bang, electronics

Friday 21 November:
Hall One (7.30pm - 8.15pm) - Performance: Sweet Billy Pilgrim (trio)
Hall Two (8.15pm - 9pm) - Remix: DJ Strangefruit, decks + B.J. Cole, pedal steel guitar
Hall One (9.30pm - 10.15pm) - Performance: Jon Hassell and Maarifa Street (Jon Hassell, trumpet, keyboards, Peter Freeman, bass, electronics, Jan Bang, live sampling, Eivind Aarset, guitar, Helge Norbakken, percussion)
Hall Two (10.15pm - 11pm) - Remix: Arve Henriksen, trumpet and Erik Honoré, electronics

Saturday 22 November:
Hall One (7.30pm - 8.15) - Performance: Sidsel Endresen, voice
Hall Two (8.15pm - 9pm) - Remix: Jon Hassell, trumpet + Erik Honoré, electronics + Jan Bang, electronics
Hall One (9.30pm - 10.15pm) - Performance: Nils Petter Molvaer, trumpet + Eivind Aarset, guitar + Audun Kleive, drums + Audun Erlien, bass
Hall Two (10.15pm - 11pm) - Remix: DJ Strangefruit, decks + Nick Luscombe, decks

Great variety of events
At Scene Norway, there are a host of inspiring activities for families over the first weekend. A musical performance of The Little Prince brings to life Saint Exupéry’s well-loved story, with musicians and dancers performing traditional Norwegian music with an English narrator. Terje Isungset and Karl Seglem will work with audiences of all ages to create a unique improvised performance, whilst SVIV perform an exhilarating, acrobatic interpretation of traditional Norwegian dance.

A rare performance of Ice Music will take place in the St Pancras room, where percussionist Terje Isungset will use sculpted ice to create extraordinary instruments that conjure the stark landscape of northern Norway.

One of the distinctive qualities of Norwegian culture is the interconnections between artists and genres. So where the musicians involved in Scene Norway happily straddle jazz, folk, contemporary, electronic and more within their music, on a wider scale many artists may also have a real affinity for more than one art form. Ketil Bjørnstad  is just one of those; a hugely popular and poetic novelist, he is also well-known for his atmospheric piano playing. He presents a reading from his forthcoming novel 'To Music' and solo piano performance following a session exploring Norwegian culture hosted by Fiona Talkington. Norway in Words offers a spotlight to a selection of writers whose works have deep rooted links with music. Kjell Ola Dahl- the master of Norwegian crime, Merete Morken Andersen and Tore Renberg come together for a discussion around Norwegian literature.

London Sinfonietta featuring Arve Henriksen
Fri 14th Nov / 07:00pm / Hall One
Scene Norway kicks off with a collaboration between Iain Bellamy and Jan Bang

Isglem + SVIV Dance Company
Sat 15th Nov / 02:00pm / Hall Two
Get involved with this special performance from Terje Isungset and Karl Seglem

Mari Boine + Isglem
Sat 15th Nov / 07:30pm / Hall One
Mari Boine performs the music of the Sami people with assistance from musical duo Isglem

The Little Prince
Sun 16th Nov / 11:30am / Hall Two
The first performance of classic tale The Little Prince that features traditional Norwegian music

The Little Prince
Sun 16th Nov / 03:30pm / Hall Two
Enjoy the second performance of heart-warming tale The Little Prince

Susanna and In the Country
Sun 16th Nov / 08:00pm / Hall Two
Vocalist Susanna k. Wallumrod  teams up with Helgen Sten and Paul Hausken to perform alongside In The Country and Morten Qvenild

An Evening with Ketil Bjørnstad
Mon 17th Nov / 08:00pm / Hall One
Join Ketil Bjornstad in conversation with Fiona Talkington as he introduces Kings Place to his artistic world

Norway in Words
Tue 18th Nov / 07:30pm / Hall One
A spoken word event featuring readings and discussion by some of Norway's leading writers

Punkt UK
Thu 20th Nov / 07:30pm / Hall One
Punkt brings together some of Norway's most original contemporary musicians over three days of events

Punkt UK
Fri 21st Nov / 07:30pm / Hall One
The second day of Punkt, the ground-breaking festival from southern Norway's Kristiansand

Punkt UK
Sat 22nd Nov / 07:30pm / Hall One
The Punkt extravaganza culminates with performances guaranteed to create spectacular sonic soundscapes

Scene Norway
14 – 22 November
Kings Place
90 York Way, London N1 9AG    
Tel: 0844 264 0321

Tickets available by telephone 0207 520 1490 or online, click here.


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Bugge Wesseltoft plays in Hall Two at Kings Place on Saturday 15 November, 10pm-1am.

Mari Boine goes on stage at Hall One in Kings Place on Saturday 15 November and will be joined by musicians Karl Seglem and Terje Isungset.Photo: Tarjei E. Krogh

Jan Bang will perform as part of PUNKT at the Kings Place.

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