Chamber music festival with star-studded anniversary

Monday 18. March 2019
Leif Ove Andsnes (c ) Gregor Hohenberg _2
Valdres Sommersymfoni celebrates 25 years with Leif Ove Andsnes and tunnel concert

Valdres Sommersymfoni marks this year`s 25th anniversary with international stars and famous orchestras such as Leif Ove Andsnes, Lars Anders Tomter, Tora Augestad, Mari Eriksmoen, Håvard Gimse, Eivind Holtsmark Ringstad, Operaorkesteret and Åse Kleveland as well as several other renowned musicians. From June21st to July 1st, the chamber music festical will host 30 concerts and events in 11 different locations in all six Valdres municipalities.


The festival´s artistic director, Guro Kleven Hagen, has chosen “Friendship” as this year`s  theme: “We have been following classical musicians for 25 years – from children to adults, from talent to star, both at the courses and at the festival. Music is a friend to everyone: it follows us throughout life and connects people from different countries and ages. We resort to music when we are happy and feel encouraged by it when we are sad. Valdres Sommersymfoni has itself become a beloved companion for music enthusiasts in the summer. The theme fits in well with our history and is something everyone can identify with. We have invited old friends and we want to make new friends, we celebrate our anniversary with people we all care about and who care about us. We hope it will be a pleasure for everyone who participates in the festival and who visits us. The festival program also reflects this: it consists of pieces that we think will be exciting to get acquainted with.”


Opening concert with Leif Ove Andsnes and Åse Kleveland


The anniversary celebration starts on June 21st, 2019 with an opening concert without equal: Åse Kleveland is the host when Leif Ove Andsnes and the Opera Orchestra play together for the first time. The concert is set on the outdoor scene of Valdres Folk Museum and both Mozart and Schubert are on the program. Tabita Berglund takes the stage as conductor when the Opera Orchestra performs Schubert's "unfinished symphony".


International soloists and famous orchestras


After this excellent start with Leif Ove Andsnes and the Opera Orchestra, the spectators can look forward to several other exceptional experiences until July 1, 2019. They can attend further concerts with e.g. Leif Ove Andsnes, Håvard Gimse, Lars Anders Tomter, Guro Kleven Hagen, Mari Eriksmoen, Tora Augestad, Louisa Tuck, Henning Kraggerud, Elise Båtnes, Eivind Holtsmark Ringstad, Ida Løvli Hidle, Sandra Lied Haga, Marianne Thorsen, Francisco López, Gunnar Flagstad, Ragnhild Hemsing, Eldbjørg Hemsing, Ensemble Allegria, Oslo Chamber Academy and Ung Filharmoni. Some musicians will be in Valdres for several days so that the audience gets more than one opportunity to hear them.


Busy tunnel as concert venue


This year Valdres Sommersymfoni offers a very rare and exclusive concert experience: before the new Bagnskleiv tunnel on the E16 between Bagn and Bjørgo will be opened for traffic, Valdres Sommersymfoni can romp in the 4.3 km long and soon heavily frequented tunnel in Valdres. In collaboration with Skanska and the Norwegian Public Roads Administration, the festival organises a concert inside the tunnel on June 29, 2019. “This is a unique opportunity to be able to play music in such a special arena, and we are very grateful for the great collaboration with Skanska and the Norwegian Public Roads Administration. Thanks to them, there is free access to the tunnel concert. We look forward to this event and to be able to experience the wonderful atmosphere before the tunnel is opened for traffic in late 2019,” says artistic director of the festival, Guro Kleven Hagen.


New concert venues


In addition to the concert in the Bagnskleiv tunnel, there are also some other new arenas in Valdres Sommersymfoni this year. There will be a very intimate concert at Breie Farm in Etnedal, fairly refreshing events at Briskeby youth house in Fagernes and exciting performances in the brand new Valdreshallen in Fagernes and Vangshallen in Vang.


Festival artist Arne Paus


When Valdres Sommersymfoni celebrates its 25th anniversary, no one is better suited than Arne Paus as this year's festival artist. He is known for his connection to the Valdres region and is responsible for the artistic decoration of several central places in Valdres. In recent years, Arne has had a studio in the closed school in Vestringsbygda. Arne Paus will be honoured with two exhibitions: an exhibition at the Radisson BLU Mountain Resort in Beitostølen and one at Galleri Perrongen in Fagernes. He himself will be in Valdres during the festival period, and it is possible to meet the artist and get information about his sources of inspiration.




Tickets for the concerts, hiking tours and other events can be purchased at the festival's website or at The ticket sale has started!



About Valdres Sommersymfoni

Since its beginning in 1994, Valdres Sommersymfoni has established itself as one of the most exciting classical music festivals in Norway and presents some of the leading soloists from all over the world. The International Chamber Music Festival offers approximately 30 concerts and events at about 15 locations throughout Valdres and attracts around 7,500 visitors each year. The audience meets world-renowned musicians in beautiful surroundings, e.g. barns, (stave) churches or outdoors and experiences classical music in a very intimate and overwhelming way.