Nordic impulses from the Bergen International Festival in 2006

The Bergen International Festival has unveiled a strong 2006 programme that features such highlights as Wagner’s Das Rheingold directed by Stefan Herheim, Per Arne Glorvigen as Musician in Residence, performances by the Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra and Avanti Chamber Orchestra and Magnus Lindeberg as Composer in Residence.

The Bergen International Festival 2006: Per Arne Glorvigen, Magnus Lindberg and Jon Fosse

Arguably one of Norway’s most important cultural events, the Bergen International Festival unveiled this week its 2006 programme which features such highlights as a Jon Fosse premiere commissioned by the Bergen International Festival and directed by Falk Richter, Peer Gynt directed by Calixto Bieito, Wagner’s Das Rheingold directed by Stefan Herheim and Little Eyolf directed by Viktoria

In collaboration with Den Nationale Scene – the Bergen theatre company – the Bergen International Festival also presents a wide variety of Norwegian and international contemporary drama. Ingun Bjørnsgaard and Eva-Cecilie Richardsen provide the choreography for Carte Blanche’s new festival dance performance, while Jo Strömgren presents his new performance The Cloister.

Music lovers can look forward to several major guest performances. The Finnish Radio Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Sakari Oramo presents all seven of Sibelius’s symphonies in three concerts, and the Oslo Philharmonic Orchestra performs Brahms’s Third and Fourth Symphonies conducted by Myung-Wun Chung. The programme also includes Gidon Kremer and his Kremerata Baltica chamber orchestra performing the complete Mozart violin concertos, Leif Ove Andsnes with the Norwegian Chamber Orchestra performing Mozart’s Piano Concertos No 14 and 17, and – in the closing concert – Jos van Immerseel leads the Belgian project orchestra Anima Eterna in a the first performance of Grieg’s A minor Piano Concerto on original instruments in modern times. The closing concert also includes Tchaikovsky’s Fourth Symphony. In the opening concert, Andrew Litton directs the Bergen Philharmonic Orchestra in performances of Arne Nordheim’s oratorio Eco (soloist Elizabeth Norberg-Schulz), Sibelius’s Violin Concerto (soloist Julian Rachlin) and Magnus Lindberg’s major orchestral work Aura.

Musician in Residence, Per Arne Glorvigen, is joined by Gidon Kremer in Astor Piazzolla’s tango opera Maria de Buenos Aires, and also performs with Mauricio Kagel and the German contemporary music ensemble musikFabrik and with the Leipzig String Quartet. The music of Festival Composer, Magnus Lindeberg, is presented in three major orchestral works and a portrait concert with the Avanti! Chamber Orchestra from Finland.

The charismatic violinist and violist Julian Rachlin gives no fewer than ten chamber concerts in five days, joined by Janine Jansen, Martin Fröst (Musician in Residence 2005), Thorleif Thedéen, Itamar Golan and Radovan Vladkovic, and others. Festival Writer 2006 is Ingvar Ambjørnsen, and Festival Exhibitor is Ole Jørgen Ness.

The Bergen International Festival opens on 24 May 2006, and ends on Monday 5 June. Tickets are available from December 1. at

The Bergen International Festival was founded in 1953 and has focused on presenting prominent international and Norwegian artists in the fields of music, ballet, opera, theatre, dance and other performing arts. The Festival, which is the principal Norwegian manifestation of this kind, presents 120-140 events each year.

Das Rheingold

Each year until 2009 Bergen International Festival in cooperation with Latvia National Opera will stage Richard Wagner’s “Der Ring des Nibelungen”. The opera ”Das Rheingold” will be one of the cornerstones in the 2006 Bergen International Festival. This is the first opera in a cycle of totally four operas, the others being: “Die Walküre”, “Siegfried” and “Götterdämmerung”. Conductor will be Latvian Andris Nelsons (26), principal conductor of Latvian National Opera. Stage director for “Das Rheingold” will be Norwegian Stefan Herheim.

More info here.

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